Heat Wave Leaves Hundreds Of Thousands Of Tomatoes To Rot Stinkily In Fields

Live rotting tomato coverage! (Fox2Now)

Live rotting tomato coverage! (Fox2Now)

Sure, farming can be stinky business. There are all those acres in need of fertilizer, after all, making things grow. But it’s an overdose of tomatoes that’s making fields stink to high heaven in Illinois, just south of St. Louis, Mo.

The usually delicious, delectable fruits grew like crazy this year, reports Fox2Now, which at first was a good thing for the farmer. But after a few weeks of plentiful tomatoes, everyone had their fill.

“If you grow in high volume and they all come at one time with full moon, there’s no way you can control them. You either have too many or you don’t have enough,” the farmer explained. “It’s a perishable item. That’s why vegetable growing is kind of tricky. It’s supply and demand.”

Then came a heat wave — zapping the tomatoes more quickly than workers could pick them, he added.

That’s left somewhere in the hundreds of thousands of pounds of tomatoes rotting on the vine, with the stink caught by the heat. And it’s been too hot to get workers out there to clean it up, bringing in the flies and all the smells.

“It smelled just like swamp,” said one passerby who was out walking with her daughter. “Once we turned the corner (the smell) definitely took us over.”

Despite the locals pinching their noses, the farmer says he can’t do much about the stench for now.

“We’ll put the mower in them, mow them down, get the fields cleaned up, get the plastic picked up… I don’t think the odor is that bad. It’s better than cabbage, put it that way,” he added.

Hundreds of thousands of tomatoes left to rot in field [Fox2Now]