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The drought phenomenon due to rising temperatures and climate change in Khorasan Razavi during the current crop year has made farmers suffer more than ever. One of the crops that has suffered the most damage is cumin.

Khorasan Razavi has the first rank of cumin production among the provinces of Iran in the field of cultivation of this medicinal plant. Some measures have been taken in Khorasan Razavi to promote cumin plantings, such as Holding training workshops, Paying for facilities needed to develop cumin cultivation on sloping lands to reduce the cost of buying inputs or seeds, Mechanization of green cumin cultivation, Establishment of a market for medicinal plants in eastern Iran, Setting up a cumin stock exchange for the first time in Iran, Production supports, Purchase and distribution of seeds suitable for each region, etc.

Unfortunately, the area under cumin cultivation has decreased due to the drought this year. Because this medicinal plant is mostly cultivated in the rainfed climate. There was a favourable but misleading rainfall in 2019 and 2020, which caused a flood, and it was predicted to have a wet period in the year. But light rain last winter and dry spring this year caused the return and continuation of the drought in the Khorasan Razavi region.

With its arid and semi-arid climate, this province recorded about 2 years of rainfall after 17 years of drought experience. However, this year it is once again facing a drought crisis. Last fall, no accurate predictions were made or announced. Also, its consequences severely threaten this region. This province faces a 67 per cent decrease in rainfall this year compared to the same period last year. All cities of Khorasan Razavi experienced this issue, too. Drought and reduced rainfall have caused a decline in the production of cumin and its by-products, which has led to an increase in its price in Mashhad. The price of some types of cumin has increased by 100 to 150 per cent compared to last year, which has reduced people’s desire to buy these herbal products.

In July of this year, 50 tons of cumin worth 98,000 USD were exported from Iran.

The United Arab Emirates was Iran’s most important cumin export destination in this period. Also, from late March to the late July of this year, about 269 tons of cumin seeds worth 516,000 USD were exported from Iran. The United Arab Emirates with 150 tons worth 298,000 USD, Turkey with 73 tons worth 148,000 USD and Iraq with 46 tons worth 70,000 USD were the most important destinations for Iranian cumin exports during these four months.

Due to forecasts of a decrease in the production of Iranian cumin exports this year caused by drought, the price of this Iranian export product in international markets has increased compared to last month. The price of various foreign currencies in the Iranian market increased during the last two weeks. However, due to the increase in demand and the decrease in the supply of this product in the market, the growing trend of Iranian cumin export prices in international markets was maintained in the last two weeks. Compared to last month, the price of Iranian green cumin exports has increased by about 22 per cent, and the price of Iranian black cumin exports has increased by about 8 per cent.

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Product Type Grade Price $/kg Price €/kg
Cumin Green Premium 3.05 2.63
Black Premium 7.75 6.68

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