By harvesting hundreds of hectors of poppy, the Taliban historically makes most of it’s money during this time of year. The poppy is used to produce opium, and Afghanistan is the world’s largest producer of the drug. However, this year it appears as if several farmers are beginning to harvest saffron instead of poppy.

Saffron, the world’s most expensive spice by weight, is proving to be more profitable for farmers in some regions of the country. One Afghan farmer recently revealed that he could make 10,000 – 20,000 Afghanis per acre of poppy, or grow Saffron and earn 200,000 Afghanis per acre. As a result, the Taliban burn saffron fields and threaten farmers who produce the crop. Recently, members of the Taliban targeted and killed workers from a saffron packing plant. Regardless, the amount of saffron exported from Herat province since January is already greater than the total for last year. The NATO Channel has the full report: