North Korea has once again put the world on edge with a missile test, this time over Japan.

The rogue nation's show of military might on Friday (15 September) came just one day after it threatened to reduce the United States mainland to "ashes and darkness" as it faced fresh sanctions in response to the regime's recent nuclear test.

And it's with the threat of nuclear war looming that one tour company has decided to offer Western travellers the unique opportunity to visit North Korea – and work with farmers in the country's rice fields.

The six-day "Farming Volunteer Program" takes tourists on an agricultural-themed trip to the outskirts of Pyongyang, where they will get "down and dirty" transplanting rice by hand and doing "odd jobs" around the field.

"We've created this program specifically to give you an exclusive insight and experience as we not only work hard, but also play hard, eating and drinking with the local farmers and their families and friends after the day is done," the organiser, Young Pioneer Tours (YPT), says on its website.

The China-based company adds: "It's not exactly backbreaking labour, so anyone can join in!"

At a price of €1,195 (£1,055, $1,430), YPT claims proceeds for the non-profit trip will be used to buy goods and petrol for farmers in the famine-ridden and fuel-scarce county.

It is the fourth such trip to be offered by YPT, with previous excursions said to have been a "wild success".

YPT is the travel company that sent US student Otto Warmbier to North Korea.

Warmbier was arrested sentenced to 15 years' hard labour by North Korean officials for allegedly attempting to steal a poser from his hotel.

The 22-year-old resurfaced in June of this year, when he was flown to the US in an unresponsive coma. He died on 19 June, with coroners still unclear on his cause of death.

YPT has since stopped taking US tourists to the communist state.

Similar agriculture-themed tours are offered on an English-language website run by North Korea's tourist board.

Professor Gareth Shaw, who lectures on tourism at University of Exeter, said the tours sounded like "hard labour" for volunteers.

He told the Daily Mirror: "The kind of tourists [who take trips like this] tends to be a mix of retired people and younger people who are interested for moral reasons in volunteering.

"There's been a couple of studies on volunteer tourism showing it's people trying to improve their well-being as people, but this work doesn't sound like that, it sounds more like hard labour."

Critics have said tours in North Korea offer a sanitised glimpse of life there, with tourists unlikely to see the harsh conditions exposed by human rights groups.