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In Photos: Farmers Harvest Buckets of Glimmering Sea Salt in Myanmar

burma salt farm

Photo: Hein Htet / The Irrawaddy

This article by Hein Htet is from The Irrawaddy, an independent news website in Myanmar, and is republished on Global Voices as part of a content-sharing agreement.

Occupying more than 1,000 acres of land beside a road in Thanbyuzayat Township, the salt farms of Panga reflect a shimmering white under the tropical sun in Mon State. They are among the less conventional of various types of farms scattered along Myanmar’s coastline, wherein the harvest is gathered from seawater.

About a two-hour drive outside the state capital Moulmein, “salt farmers” manning the evaporation ponds come into view. They only work from December to May, when there is sufficient sunlight to evaporate the accumulated seawater, leaving behind its salt.

The ponds, stretching out to the horizon, were previously manned by locals, but as much of Mon State’s indigenous population has migrated to neighboring Thailand for more lucrative work, most of the sea salt farmers in Panga these days are from Myanmar's Irrawaddy Delta.

salt farming

Photo: Hein Htet / The Irrawaddy

salt farm

Photo: Hein Htet / The Irrawaddy

myanmar salt farm

Photo: Hein Htet / The Irrawaddy

seawater harvest

Photo: Hein Htet / The Irrawaddy

salt farmers

Photo: Hein Htet / The Irrawaddy

burma coastline

Photo: Hein Htet / The Irrawaddy

saltwater farm

Photo: Hein Htet / The Irrawaddy

farmer

Photo: Hein Htet / The Irrawaddy

seawater farm

Photo: Hein Htet / The Irrawaddy

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