How to Test & Identify Pure Saffron?
Saffron is the most expensive & precious spice in the world which the value worth as much as the value of gold.
Some counterfeit companies turn saffron into other plants that are similar to saffron in the production process with colored sprays or mixed with fake materials and even sprayed with water to make it heavier and costlier by weight.
It may be difficult to distinguish pure saffron from fake. Customers don’t want to find out that they have been cheated after paying a high price for buying saffron and what they are buying is counterfeit saffron.
However, there are also ISO standards, such as the ISO 3632 standard for saffron that can help customers identify pure saffron. Here, are some methods in order to easily recognize the real saffron.
Ways to distinguish Real Saffron and Fake Saffron
In this article, we offer some methods to distinguish genuine saffron from counterfeit:
Pure Saffron is the stigma of the autumn crocus flower. While the flower is purple, the stigma is red. Each crocus bulb produces only one flower and each flower only produces 3 stigmas. As a result, the spice is difficult to harvest and expensive to purchase.
A very distinct way of identifying is the aroma. The pure saffron aroma is very interesting and has a strong floral scent & fascinating smell. The smell of high quality saffron as sweet aroma that this smell is due to the concentration of safranal in saffron. It is literally a combination of Hay (Alfalfa) and Honey smells. The fresher the saffron, the fragrant it is.
Appearance (Look & Feel):
Pure saffron threads have a trumpet-shaped end. Indeed, the stigma of the saffron stalk is like trumpet at upper part and thinner at the bottom. If a thread does not bulge at one end, it’s a fake & adulterated. In addition, the top of the pure saffron branch should be horny and fake saffron is not like this.
Counterfeit saffron can be totally fake or may have a few threads of pure saffron craftily added to mislead clients and generally be anything that looks like a saffron thread and colored to replicate the real stuff.
Corn husk and saffron stigmas are similar. The difference is that the saffron stigmas are curved, which can help you identify the real saffron. The safflower is similar in appearance to the real saffron, so don’t be fooled by its color and fragrance.
The original saffron will have an earthy flavor. While the pure saffron smells sweet but it will never taste sweet. It tastes slightly bitter and it may feel a little bitter. Hence, if you put a saffron thread in your mouth and if it tastes sweet…. It’s fake. Some dishonest sellers add honey or sugar to increase the weight of saffron.
In distinguishing pure saffron from counterfeit, Check the color of the saffron in water.
For this experiment, put saffron threads in a small bowl of tepid (lukewarm) or cold water. Wait at least 15 minutes. The original saffron releases itself and slowly turn uniform yellow or orange color for 10 to 20 minutes.
Indeed, the genuine saffron, slowly leaves a golden mark in the water but the counterfeit saffron has a chemical color that will immediately begin to return color and often its color tends to be orange and bright red. Hence, If the saffron you bought had a lot of fast coloring, doubt its authenticity.
By the way, the pure saffron thread in cold / hot water still retains its red color after dyeing and over time and it wouldn’t have lost its original color but fake saffron changes & lose their color and turns white after dyeing.
Rub The Saffron Threads between your Fingers
Put saffron in cold water and after saffron has bloomed in for a few minutes, take a couple of the saffron threads and rub the threads between two fingers back and forth for a few minutes.
You will notice that the original saffron threads remain and hold their shape without breaking apart but adulterated saffron threads will quickly fall apart or turns to powder and leaks out itself.
Moreover, if you rub pure saffron between your fingers, your skin will turn yellow & orange that this means, the saffron you bought is genuine.
Press the Saffron Threads between 2 Pieces of Paper
Put & press some of the saffron threads between 2 pieces of paper or newspaper. The pure saffron doesn’t leave any stain or trace of on the paper at all but counterfeit saffron leaves oil and fat stains on paper that it indicates the saffron is fake and may be oil has been added to fake saffron it to gain weight. The real saffron is crushed like powdered and has no fat.
Distinguishing Saffron with Gasoline
You should know that, the original saffron doesn’t dissolve in gasoline and it should not change color if you pour some of it into gasoline.
Interaction of Saffron with Baking Soda
One of the amazing tests is to combine a little baking soda in a cup of water and mix it. Then add some saffron to the mixture. If the saffron is original, the water and baking soda will turn yellow. Otherwise, you are dealing with fake saffron and the saffron is adulterated and will turn a faint red color.
Buying Saffron from Valid Brands of Saffron Producers
Buying saffron from valid & reputable brands of saffron producers or saffron exporter companies. Well-known brands have international certifications and marks such as the ISO standard.
We are selling the purest saffron directly from Sun’s Secret. Both wholesale and retail, you can request any kind of packaging as well.
We guaranteed the Pure Saffron with the affordable price just for you