Film: Opium Farmer

The lives of producers of prohibited plants in Myanmar
17 December 2018
Multi-media

For most farmers and their families, opium cultivation is a means of survival, especially in the context poverty, insecurity, and repression. This film sensitively portrays the lives of two opium farming families in Myanmar and sheds light on their plight.

Myanmar is the second largest opium producer in the world after Afghanistan. Opium cultivation is often the only viable cash crop for poor farmers living in remote mountain areas in Kachin and Shan States. Indigenous people in Kachin and Shan also use opium culturally, in religious rituals and as traditional medicine.
 
The Myanmar government is carrying out forced eradication to reduce opium production without sufficiently considering the farmers themselves. The Myanmar Opium Farmers’ Forum (MOFF) was formed in 2013 to protect the rights of farmers and help them have meaningful involvement in drug policy design and alternative livelihood development. This film sensitively portrays the lives of two opium farming families in Myanmar and sheds light on their plight.