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Thanks to Iran Sanctions, the US's Saffron King's Running Out of Saffron

Behroush Sharifi, a New York-based spice merchant better known as the "Saffron King," has developed a growing business based on importing his good from Iran. But the trade sanctions imposed by Washington last year on Tehran have left the King with a dwindling supply of saffron. As he tells the Washington Post's "All We Can Eat" column:

“We’re about to run out of saffron, and it’s 80 percent of my business. Even the remaining 20 percent, we’ve already run out of a number of the other ingredients, and we can’t replace them. We do eventually want to source everything out of Turkey. As I said during the course of dinner, 70 percent of what we import from Iran is not of Iranian origin. From India, from China, from Syria, from Afghanistan, from Turkey. All of these items can still come into America, but not from Iran."

Sharifi, who has become a favored spice supplier for several high-end restaurants across the US, also explained to the Post why good saffron -- which can cost hundreds of dollars per ounce -- is so expensive:

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Thanks to Iran Sanctions, the US's Saffron King's Running Out of Saffron

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