PHOTOGRAPHED BY LUKE DUGGLEBY
One of our photographers traveled to the tea plantations of Burma to capture these shots.
Published on Jul 29, 2014
Handpicked in the hills
Tea pickers from the Palaung ethnic minority gather tea leaves on the steep hills surrounding the ridge-top town of Namshan, deep in Burma's remote Shan State.
Workers sort tea leaves by hand into different grades. Lower quality plants are dried, while the best are pickled for up to six months in large wooden boxes or even in a simple hole in the ground.
Tossing the tea
Almost everyone who lives in Namshan is involved in the tea business, an industry that produces thousands of tonnes of tea a year, mostly for domestic consumption.
A salad like no other
There's a catch with laphet: unlike most teas, this variety is meant to be eaten. The national delicacy mixed with onions, chilies or garlic is typically served at the end of a meal.