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Portrait of a picker weighing harvested rose flowers, Kelaat M'Gouna, Southern Morocco.

Portrait of a rose flower picker weighing their days crop at an old, traditional weighing scales next door to a shop nearby to the rose fields in Kelaat M'Gouna, Dades Valley - known as the ‘valley of roses’ - Southern Morocco, 2016-05-14.

The farmers take their harvest to be weighed at a local scale. The weighing scales are often located besides small boutique shops inside the villages, with communal water drinking cups for the workers to take a break. While some flowers will be dried for sale as decorative items and added to dried fragrant perfume mixes and teas, the main bulk of the harvest are used to make rose water. High in essential vitamins like vitamin E, A, & B3, as well as being rich in anti-oxidants, flavonoids and tannins, rose water is thought to have have many natural healing properties and is mainly known for its benefits to skin care.

When the roses begin to bloom and the picking season begins, people from all around the region secure work harvesting the flowers in the fields. Pickers who do not own their own land and need work during the harvesting season can expect to be paid 13-15dh for each kilo of roses and it is possible to earn 100dh in a day, if few breaks are taken.

The picking season lasts for around 3 weeks and while the roses are in full bloom the entire valley of Kelaat Mgouna quite literally ‘smells of roses.’ Stepping down into the rose valley, only a short walk from the main roadside, feels like a different world to the nearby festival celebrations in the town centre. No noise or pollution from traffic, only birdsong and a gentle calmness in the air as the day breaks and the locals peacefully go about their work.

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AK6A0110-39.jpg
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Chris Griffiths
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2000x1333 / 2.6MB
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Kelaat M'Gouna rose harvest
Portrait of a rose flower picker weighing their days crop at an old, traditional weighing scales next door to a shop nearby to the rose fields in Kelaat M'Gouna, Dades Valley - known as the ‘valley of roses’ - Southern Morocco, 2016-05-14.<br />
<br />
The farmers take their harvest to be weighed at a local scale. The weighing scales are often located besides small boutique shops inside the villages, with communal water drinking cups for the workers to take a break. While some flowers will be dried for sale as decorative items and added to dried fragrant perfume mixes and teas, the main bulk of the harvest are used to make rose water. High in essential vitamins like vitamin E, A, & B3, as well as being rich in anti-oxidants, flavonoids and tannins, rose water is thought to have have many natural healing properties and is mainly known for its benefits to skin care.<br />
<br />
When the roses begin to bloom and the picking season begins, people from all around the region secure work harvesting the flowers in the fields. Pickers who do not own their own land and need work during the harvesting season can expect to be paid 13-15dh for each kilo of roses and it is possible to earn 100dh in a day, if few breaks are taken. <br />
<br />
The picking season lasts for around 3 weeks and while the roses are in full bloom the entire valley of Kelaat Mgouna quite literally ‘smells of roses.’ Stepping down into the rose valley, only a short walk from the main roadside, feels like a different world to the nearby festival celebrations in the town centre. No noise or pollution from traffic, only birdsong and a gentle calmness in the air as the day breaks and the locals peacefully go about their work.