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Kashmiri saffron There Are 3 main components’ of saffron
1) Crocin (which is yellow pigment from saffron )
2) Picrocrocin (which gives rusty bittersweet, rusty flavour)
3) Saffron (which lends earthy fragrance of spice )
The chemicals found in saffron may be classified according to their volatility, or the absence of it. Its major non-volatile components include crocin, α-crocin, carotenoids that include lycopene, zeaxanthin, and both alpha- and beta- carotenes, crocetin, and picrocrocin. The major volatile components include terpene, terpene alcohol, and terpene esters. Safranal is also a major volatile composite formed from picrocrocin as a result of the interaction of heat and enzymes during the drying process. Crocin and pi crocin are highly sensitive to light and air, which explains why saffron must be kept in airtight containers and stashed away in a cool, dark place while they are not being used. Exposure to atmospheric oxygen and sunlight will cause oxidation that will greatly reduce the properties of crocin and pi crocin, thus lessening the quality of saffron. Anti-oxidant properties of saffron have also been isolated and are being studied for use on drugs that will combat cancer, depression and other neuro-degenerative disorders.