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May Wilkerson May Wilkerson

Video: The Opium Fields of Myanmar

Civil war and poverty have fueled a resurgence in the production of opium poppies in Asia's "Golden Triangle," which supplies most of the world's heroin. This video offers a stunning look inside the reviving industry.

3 Substance

Opium poppy crops in Myanmar are experiencing a recent resurgence as farmers struggle to make ends meet in the midst of poverty and civil war. Jonah M. Kessel’s beautifully shot and produced video (below), Relapse in the Golden Triangle, offers a look inside the thriving industry in the heart of Asia’s “Golden Triangle,” where most of the world’s heroin originates. Opium fields in Myanmar and Laos reached 63,800 hectares—or about 90,000 football fields—in 2014, according to a recent UN report.

“It was heartbreaking to see this region swallowed up by the drug trade,” says Thomas Fuller, who helped report the story for the Times. ”It has the potential to be much, much more.”