Assareh said, “In the near future, we will witness that the processed products from barberry, a medicinal plant, is going to enter the European markets, especially Germany.”
Referring to barberry as red ruby and the fact that it is an endemic plant of Iran, Dr. Mohammad Hassan Assareh, in an interview with IRNA reporter stated, “A knowledge-based company with the collaboration of this council is planning on marketing and exporting the processed products from this medicinal plants to Europe.”
Concerning the high antioxidant properties of this medicinal plant, he said, “By supporting the export of these kinds of products, this council is willing to introduce the valuable medicinal plants of Iran to the world market, such as Germany.”
The secretary for National Council for Science and Technology Development of Medicinal Plants and Traditional Medicine went on to say, “The processing of this valuable product in the form of powder or other processes is currently being done by the researchers.”
He expressed his hope for this product to enter the world market as strongly as does saffron and added, “In the years to come, the processed products of this plant can constitute a large proportion of the exports in the field of medicinal plants.”
Assareh stressed that there needs to be a strong support of knowledge-based companies in the field of medicinal plants and said, “By supporting the knowledge-based companies, this council is planning on preparing the grounds for the processed products to enter the world market in the most effective way.”
He referred to the increase of the cultivation areas of barberry in the country and said, “The cultivation area of barberry in 2013, was 12 thousand hectares, whereas today, the number has reached up to 15 thousand hectares. With the proper planning of the Ministry of Agriculture Jihad, until the end of the sixth economic plan, this number will rise up to 19 thousand hectares.”
Barberry is grown on shrubs from 1-5 meter tall with thorns,its wood is red, brown or yellow. Its leaves are oval with spiny margins. Its fruit is oval, red and tastes sour.
The time for the barberry shrub to blossom is the end of spring or the beginning of summer, the yellow buds of the barberry turn ripening red in autumn.
Iran is the biggest producer of barberry in the world, Khorasan province and Ghaenat county have 97 percent of the lands under the cultivation of this product, and produce 95 percent of the world’s barberry.