Saffron color purity

Unfortunately, there is nothing to stop saffron producers from making their saffron with only half true stigmas and the other half made up of the yellow styles. There's also nothing to prevent them from dying these yellow styles red to give the appearance of quality saffron.
Now if you come across saffron that seems too good to be true - it's all red and very inexpensive - you're probably dealing with inferior saffron.
Remember to look for the ISO certification, which all quality saffron will have. But if you bring it home and you're still not so sure, here's a quick test. When you first put quality saffron in liquid, the liquid will turn a slightly pale yellow, and over time will turn the liquid a stronger and more vibrant color.
If your saffron immediately turns the water a strong yellow, this is a sign your saffron was artificially colored. What you are actually seeing is the dye washing off your saffron.

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