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From Poppy to Coffee: How Thailand Became a Model for Alternative Development

... suppression became a global agenda. In Southeast Asia, opium poppies have been cultivated for centuries. Possibly brought in from southern China, the use of opium was integrated into the culture of indigenous communities such as the Hmong and Karen. Their ... ... escape poverty, but even so, did not receive high returns. The network of illegal trade in the Golden Triangle, an area where the borders of the three countries meet, peaked during the 1960s with an estimated 145 tons of opium produced in Thailand annually....
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