We have heard lately that Vermont farmers are starting a new movement, planting saffron in Vermont. Is this true?
We are here to discuss it, and we hope this will be helpful.
Does Saffron Grow in Vermont?
Saffron growing in Vermont is not a new challenge, and many farmers in the area, with the support of the University of Vermont, have started producing saffron. Saffron cultivation in this region has gone beyond the experimental stages, and a brand and community of saffron farmers have been formed.
We are all on the same path and have the same goal. Our agricultural group declares its support for this movement and is ready for any cooperation and exchange of knowledge with this association.
Let’s get back to Vermont, we think Vermont is suitable for growing saffron, and our reasons are as follows:
The maximum summer temperature in Vermont is about 80 degrees Fahrenheit. The minimum temperature in Vermont in winter is -16 degrees Fahrenheit and saffron can tolerate this temperature well.
The rainfall in this state is excellent, and saffron can be thoroughly irrigated and irrigated only when necessary (maybe once). Also, studies at the University of Vermont show that the state’s soil conditions are good for saffron cultivation.
In fact, tests performed at the University of Vermont show that saffron is fully compatible with the state, and we only need some optimizations and adaptations.
Profits of Growing Saffron in Vermont
Saffron Growing in the USA is relatively new and it takes time to get regulated with local culture and economy. But even in this situation, we can have 2 main revenue streams for growing saffron in Vermont.
- Selling Saffron or its byproducts
- selling saffron bulbs
Growing saffron is a unique business. In this business, we plant saffron bulbs once and harvest saffron for an average of seven years. If we plant a one-hectare farm, we can harvest 10-15 kg saffron per year on average by the ideal saffron planting method, which would be excellent.
Also, we can have another main revenue stream. Imagine you planted 10 kg of saffron bulbs in your garden in the 2022 summer. You will harvest saffron flowers every fall for seven years; after that, you should remove the bulbs from the ground and plant them elsewhere.
Do you think how many saffron bulbs you will have?
You will likely have more than 70 kg of saffron bulbs, which means a 100% net annual growth.
Saffron Planting Time in Vermont
Summer is the best time to plant saffron in Vermont, as in other parts of the world and the United States, for a very important reason. The saffron bulbs get into the sleep phase in summer, and this helps us to move them from one farm to another.
We want to have the less possible stress and pressure on the bulbs, and the sleep phase of saffron bulbs does this for us.
If we plant the bulbs in summer, we can harvest the saffron flowers in the same or the following fall. The harvesting process will take at least seven years to the point where the bulbs are saturated, and we are forced to remove them from the ground.
How to Grow Saffron in Vermont
Let’s start by asking a few questions. To begin, we must ask what is our purpose for saffron growing?
The answer will probably be that we want to enter the saffron trade and make a good profit. Well, if that’s what you want, we have to say that you have probably gone the wrong way. If you look at the saffron market, you will see that Iran produces more than 90% of the world’s saffron, which can tell us a lot about competition.
Well, our job is done. Will we no longer be able to benefit from the saffron trade?
We have several ways to profit from this market, and the first way is to produce organic saffron suitable for medical purposes. I remember in a saffron meeting, a founder of a pharmaceutical company in Switzerland said: “We love to use saffron in our products, but unfortunately, authentic and organic saffron is very rare.”
The second way is to optimize the planting and production of saffron in a way that makes it profitable for us to plant in Vermont. We can use new saffron planting tools and reduce saffron harvesting costs.
It is possible, and there are now machines for harvesting saffron, but they are not yet complete and need to be innovated and improved. But we can use them directly by following some techniques.