A project born from a dream
Shirin Persia was born from an idea of mine: my name is Ala, I'm an Iranian girl, I live in Italy, and I decided to turn a dream born from my degree thesis in management engineering in Italy into a small business venture. To make known and import here one of the best Saffron in the world: certainly the richest in history, that of my native land, Iran, and together with it... the stories of those who cultivate it.
During my studies, I was able to deepen the reality of the international saffron market and personally get to know those who cultivate it with sacrifice in the Khorasan region. This is how this project was born. Our immediate objectives are:
- promoting and selling the purest and best quality saffron from Qa'en in Iran.
- Create a short supply chain and make customers aware of the stories of Iranian producers to guarantee them a fair sale price and projects that can help the sustainable development of their business - to create greater knowledge and culture of Saffron in consumers. It is thanks to the culture and understanding of the product that prevent fraud and exploitation of producers.
- Promote responsible and sustainable tourism in the saffron production areas, with the aim of creating a direct line between producers and consumers based on mutual knowledge and trust.
- To promote the development of local, high-quality craftsmanship linked to the world of Iranian Saffron.
Qa'en, Iran: the production area
The heart of world saffron production is located in Iran, in particular in the Khorasan region. Within the Khorasan region, the absolute best quality saffron productions are concentrated around the locality of Qa'en or Qa'en.
The high-quality standards of these productions are due to the practices used for cultivation, the characteristics of the land used, and the meteorological-climatic aspects of the region.
In particular, the climatic type of the locality of Qa'en is ideal for the cultivation of Saffron. The land locates at an average altitude of 1400-1500 m (up to 2300 m), identified as the best altitude range for the cultivation of Crocus sativus in the considered latitude.
The soils have a sandy-gravelly matrix, draining of a calcareous-ferruginous nature with an alkaline pH between 6 and 8: there are optimal levels of Zinc, Calcium, Iron, carbonates, Manganese for the growth of Crocus Sativus. The draining nature of the soil means that no stagnation of water is created, which could cause the onset of diseases, parasitic fungi, to which Saffron is very sensitive.
Fair and supportive
The crops are characterized by small family-run land. This structure allows growers to treat crops with traditional and sustainable practices that do not involve pesticides and chemical fertilizers but provide manual interventions and treatments that allow for reasonable control of the health of the bulbs. The fertilization of the land takes place by means of organic fertilizers deriving from the manure of farmed animals.
The manual processing of soil allows the conductors to use practices that guarantee to optimize the quality parameters present in the final product (levels of crocin and safranal). In particular, the collection of flowers takes place before dawn so that the sunlight does not open the flowers, preserving their quality.