BUENOS AIRIES, ARGENTINA — Devastated by drought, Argentina’s 2017-18 soybean crop is forecast at 36 million tonnes, a 37% drop from the estimated production at the beginning of the year, according to a Aug. 30 Global Agricultural Information Network (GAIN) report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

“Feedback from the harvest progress over the last two months reflected more serious drought damage than initially expected with a national average yield falling 22% to 2.12 tonnes per hectare,” the USDA said. “Only areas in north Buenos Aires, south Santa Fe, and east Cordoba provinces withstood the drought impacts to deliver yields at historic average levels of 2.7 tonnes per hectare or slightly above.”



The heat smoke and thus lowered light causes problems for crops and workers.

We don’t have a lot of research on smoke because it’s not something that we encounter frequently,” says Tim Waters, a regional vegetable specialist for WSU. “Smoke is hard to replicate in a greenhouse. We have a lot of speculation, but not a lot of fact on what smoke will do to the crop.”

At a nearby farm outside Eltopia, Wash., Alan Schreiber says he’s been having to send his 30 workers home around noon. They’re wearing masks, but even with them on, the smoke is making people sick — with tight chests, itchy eyes and dry throats.