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US veterans built Afghan saffron company in Chicago

(Last Updated On: April 6, 2016)

Kim and Emily Saffron

Afghanistan saffron has made three US veterans become interested in building a saffron company in Chicago; They aim to cultivate peace in Afghanistan through farming

The three war veterans are hoping to give farmers there a viable alternative to growing poppy for opium.

The company is called Rumi Spice. It was started by three Afghanistan War veterans, including West Point grads and longtime best friends Kimberly Jung and Emily Miller.

“The U.S. Military has probably spent millions, if not billions, of dollars on poppy eradication in Afghanistan. And thus far it’s been largely unsuccessful. They’ve done things like set fire to the crops or just outright try to destroy the fields. But at the end of the day, we truly believe that farmers need an economic alternative. And saffron is definitely the way,” Emily Miller said.

Jung also says ” We’re not in this to make lots of money. We’re in this because we believe that connecting Afghan farmers to the international marketplace is something that’s worth fighting for – it’s worth fighting for our global security, it’s worth fighting for everyone’s future – and that it’s going to make economic sense.”

Growing saffron in Afghanistan is still relatively uncommon, while neighboring Iran grows most of the world’s saffron.

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