Fresh miraa (also known as khat) from a kiosk in Meru, Kenya*. Tastes like bad rhubarb and is worse than chewing gum. This is what the UK has just banned as a restricted drug - a herbal stimulant popular among the Somali diaspora. Kenya’s miraa farmers have registered a protest due to its impact on their local economy. Miraa is deeply integrated in Ameru culture and society.
Some interesting facts you didn’t know - these leaves lose their value within 48 hours of being plucked so the supply chain from the traditional miraa growing regions in East Africa to London is one of the most efficient, yet completely informal, in the world. The fresh leaves reach shops in the UK within 24 hours.
* Only the first photo was taken in Meru as part of a consumer study on household energy consumption. The client company specified locations according to their sales data.