The Efficiency of Saffron’s Marketing Channel in Iran

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Saffron is a strategic product of Iran. Iran’s share of Saffron from the world production and export is almost 90%. However, this figure is much higher in the processing and marketing sectors. Marketing is an important component in Saffron production.So,in this paper we surveyed efficiency of Saffron marketing channel. Result showed that Marketing margin of Saffron is high so that producers receive less than 65% of final price of consumer. According to special advantage of this product, creation of regional marketing board beside exchange market for coordinating production, marketing and export and maintaining market share is suggested.

Saffron is one of the most important export products and plays a significant role in income and employment of Saffron producers. It is a major product of Khorasan, Fars and Kerman provinces [1, 2]. Iran, Greece, Morocco, Kashmir, Spain and Italy are among main countries dealing with Saffron production. Among these countries, Iran as the original home of Saffron has always had the largest area harvest and production area. According to statistics of year 2005, the amount of Saffron production in Iran was 230 tons which constitutes 93.7% of the world Saffron production. Greece with 5.7 tons and Morocco and Kashmir with 2.3 tons come respectively in second and third positions regarding Saffron production. Iran has more than 90% of the total world harvest areas among other major countries, having 50000 hectare harvest area of Saffron. Due to drought, Saffron yield has particularly decreased during the recent year while the price for Saffron has varied considerably. Historically, Iran has been the most important exporter of Saffron in the world, having 190 tons Saffron export and 80% of the total export the world.

In summary, Saffron is a traditional production of Iran and production share of this product is 93.7% of the world total production, 82% of it being exported. In fact, Iran is the largest producer and exporter of Saffron in international level. Major importer countries of Iran’s Saffron are: The United Arab Emirates (UAE), Spain, Torkmenistan, France and Italy. UAE is the largest customer with a total purchase of 78.8 tons per year of Saffron. Spain is the second largest with 56.4 tons. Now, some 90% of Iran’s Saffron exports are in bulk

Spain processes and re-exports some 40%-50% of Iran’s Saffron production. Values of Iran’s Saffron export has a increasing trend during 2000-2006 . The survey on agricultural marketing studies showed that efficiency of agricultural marketing channel and producer’s share of consumer price is low [3-10]. With respect to high price of Saffron in non-oil export, it has an important role in Iran's economy. Considering its frequent use, special properties of this drug, lt's role in economic life of Khorasan, Fars and Kerman provinces farmers and high value added of Saffron, it is necessary to develop the production, export and marketing of this valuable crop. Other aspects of the importance of Saffron include high productivity of water in cultivated area of Saffron, employment, preventing of rural migration, non-oil export development due to government policy for increasing the non petroleum export. This paper has investigated the efficieny of Saffron marketing channel in Iran.

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