Isn’t it the saffron crocus stigma that serves as the dye/spice? The article says stamens. I’ve bought cheap stuff that included both, but it was intended to be used as a dye for Buddhist monks’ robes.
I think the high quality stuff is just stigmas, but anyone else care to clarify? Incidentally, if readers want to see wonderful pictures of the saffron harvest in Iran, go to Sidewalk Lyrics’ twitter stream and search for #Khorasan.