In 2018, the World Food Programme reported that 823,600 individuals in Myanmar were facing food insecurity. By 2022 this number had increased significantly to 13.2 million and in 2023, according to the OCHA, 15.2 million people need food assistance.


In addition to the acute hunger crisis Myanmar is facing, Eden has noticed a direct link between human trafficking and food insecurity. We have found that the largest source of vulnerability was debt bondage, the largest source of debt bondage was medical bills and that the source of the medical bills is poor nutrition.

45.1% of all trafficking victims Eden came across in 2022 were in that devastating situation due to debt bondage and 96% of those victims were in debt to pay for basic needs and medical bills. Eden’s microgreens project seeks to change this cycle by altering the baseline health of the people Eden encounters.

Another transformative aspect of Eden’s microgreens program is to provide education to vulnerable communities regarding healthy eating, nutrition and how these things can improve overall health, avoid hospital visits, reduce medical bills, and limit vulnerability to debt.



The Program

Microgreens are grown at the Eden office, in the grounds of our safe shelters, and in our drop-in centers by survivors of human trafficking. We have also launched a community growers program which involves the distribution of grower kits to vulnerable communities for people to grow their own microgreens at home. They then have the opportunity to sell the crop back to Eden for a profit or, should they wish, they can retain some of the microgreens to use themselves – to eat or to turn into a powder and mix in drinks or sprinkle on rice.


The microgreens grown in Yangon’s peri-urban areas are transported to Eden’s center where the microgreen powder is produced by trafficking survivors utilizing dehydration machines. These trafficking survivors receive monthly stipends which economically empowers them and their families.

All packaging, seeds, trays, soil, and miscellaneous items are being sourced from within Myanmar to make the program as sustainable, scalable, and beneficial to Myanmar as possible.

Eden then distributes the packaged microgreens powder in vulnerable communities, it is given out as humanitarian support and is also sold to those who can afford it, providing funding for supplies and the ongoing operations of Eden and our work with trafficking victims. In January 2024 we distributed our first 400 packs of powder to families in the slum areas of Yangon.




The Benefits of Microgreens

Several peer-reviewed studies have shown that microgreens have anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, anti-bacterial and anti-hyperglycaemia (diabetes) properties, making this crop highly valuable in terms of human health. Therefore, through the project and in partnership with INGOs, local civil society organizations, and corporations, we hope to achieve a significant increase in the level of nutritional health among poverty-stricken communities, migrant workers, trafficking survivors, and the wider population of Yangon. 



Watch this video below to learn more about Eden's microgreens program.