Agriculture Report – Afghan Farmers Again Increase Poppy Crop

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Agriculture Report - Afghan Farmers Again Increase Poppy Crop

From VOA Learning English, this is the Agriculture Report.

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farmers are expecting another big harvest this year, but at the United Nations and around the world see reason to celebrate. The crop is opium. Farmers have busy harvesting their opium poppies. One farmer in Helmand says wheat and corn bring too little income. He people in Helmand cannot feed themselves by growing food . A report by the UN Office on Drugs and warns that Afghanistan could supply as much as 90 of the world's heroin. The report says opium production especially high in the most unstable areas of Afghanistan. are areas where the surge increase in American troops beat back Taliban influence.

The report says insurgents used insecurity in areas like Helmand and Kandahar province as chance to win popular support. They also assisted opium with their crops.

The UN says poor weather and disease led to a reduction in the supply of last year, which drove up prices. The higher price opium makes more farmers want to grow poppies. The says this is the third year in a row opium poppy-growing has increased in Afghanistan. A UN special on drug issues says the huge opium crop is sign of failure. He adds that while farmers are on the income from opium, 1 million people in country are addicted to the drug. The increase in follows gains made by the government during years of to reduce the drug trade. For VOA Learning English, Laurel Bowman



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