Written By: Tabasum Nasiry
Due to its favourable climatic conditions, Herat province stands as the largest saffron producer in Afghanistan. Reports indicate that approximately 80% of this sector’s workforce comprises women.
Soraya Daqiq, in charge of one of the saffron processing factories in Herat province, shared with Khaama Press that 50 to 60 women, most of whom are schoolgirls and homemakers, are actively engaged in the daily production of saffron in the workshop.
According to Soraya Daqiq, the recent earthquake and its repercussions have affected people’s lives at all levels, but despite all these challenges, saffron production has increased compared to previous years.
She defines the purpose of establishing this saffron processing factory as creating employment opportunities for women who have become unemployed due to limitations and face significant financial difficulties. She emphasized her commitment to supporting women.
This saffron cultivation factory, established in 2019, has provided employment opportunities for dozens of women in various fields, including saffron cultivation and processing, as well as agriculture and land ownership.
It is worth noting that the eighth saffron flower festival was held in Herat on Thursday, with the participation of several saffron sellers, traders, and farmers.
Leila, one of the attendees at the eighth saffron festival in Herat, noted that the presence of women in this festival seems to be less compared to previous years.
According to her, eighty per cent of the saffron production workforce in Herat consists of women who are engaged in various sectors, including processing, packaging, and cleaning.
Leila emphasized that most women in this sector complain about not receiving work permits, and this restriction has had a detrimental impact on their work.
This is happening while, according to reports, 30 saffron trading companies are currently operating in Herat, and more than 80% of their employees in various saffron processing sectors are women and girls.
Herat is the largest saffron producer in Afghanistan, annually exporting dozens of tons of this product to foreign countries and holding a unique position in global markets.
According to published statistics, saffron cultivation has increased in the country compared to previous years.