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Myanmar world’s biggest opium producer

Facts for Prelims (FFP)

 

Source: TOI

 Context: Myanmar has become the world’s largest producer of opium in 2023, surpassing Afghanistan, according to a United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime report.

  • Myanmar’s opium production is estimated at 1,080 metric tonnes, while Afghanistan’s production has plummeted by 95% to around 330 tonnes due to the Taliban’s ban on poppy cultivation.
  • Conflict, instability, poor market access, and inflation have driven farmers in Myanmar to cultivate poppy, contributing to the highest opium production in over 20 years.

 

Opium:

It is a highly addictive non-synthetic narcotic that is extracted from the poppy plantPapaver somniferum. The opium poppy is the key source of many narcotics, including morphine, codeine, and heroin.