Swedish Christmas treat hit by Iranian harvest

Fancy indulging in the Swedish tradition of eating saffron buns, or lussekatter, along with your Glögg this Christmas? If so, you might find it costs you.

The price of saffron – already the world’s most expensive spice – has tripled in the past year, Branca Veljovic, saffron buyer for Swedish spice company Santa Maria told Svenska Dagbladet.

The main reason is the failure of the crocus harvest in Iran. Saffron is derived from the stigma of the saffron crocus.

Adding to the upwards pressure on prices are Iran’s increased export duties.

Veljovic says she buys two tons of saffron per year. Some 150,000 crocus flowers are needed to produce one kilo of saffron. The price of saffron us currently 15,700 kronor per kilo, excluding VAT.