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Meet Mehdi Shariati

who established PureSaffrona in 2015, two years after making New Zealand his home. He comes from a family of farmers and teachers living in the north-eastern part of Iran. This is premium saffron-growing country, producing just under 95 per cent of the world’s spice (300 tons per year).

Mehdi has always had the travel bug—he started studying for a BSc in biology in the Ukraine, continued it in Moscow and completed it in Iran! After deciding that travelling appealed more, he changed tack, completed a further course of study and became a professional tour guide in Iran. He still goes back there every year to spend time with family and friends.

Mehdi married in New Zealand and says his adopted country has given him the gift of untouched nature, which he loves to get out into and explore whenever he can. He appreciates the warm welcome that Kiwis have given him and his family.

One of Mehdi’s dreams is to take his wife to the Himalayan regions of Nepal and North India. He has been before and would love to go again.

I’d like to give back by bringing gourmet spices and herbs from my Mum’s kitchen and introducing you to their medicinal and culinary qualities. I am happy I can provide Kiwis with the same ingredients my family members back in Iran use in their dishes, teas, drinks and desserts.