SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — On top of hot temperatures across South Dakota, a majority of the state is experiencing drought conditions this year.

In this week’s Flashback Friday, we take you back to 1988 for a look at the damage that year’s drought did to soybeans.

The soybean harvest is underway all across the state and in spite of the extreme drought, many producers are optimistic. In fact, Mellette area farmer Wayne Larson says his 300 acres of soybeans are looking better than any other crop he’s raised this summer.

“We’re pleasantly surprised. It’s yielding probably two-thirds of a normal yield, a lot better than we expected.”

But across the nation, the picture for the oil crop isn’t as bright. The American Soybean Association says elevators in some parts of the country have refused to take beans shriveled by the drought.

But here in South Dakota, only about 2% of the beans harvested are shriveled. A bigger problem in this area is the presence of green beans, a condition that happens when drought-stressed fields don’t mature evenly.

“Everybody’s anxious to get their beans off the land. They’re out there going through it, and we’re seeing as high as 6% green damage.”

But much of the problem nationally stems from uncertainty. Shriveled soybeans have never been a problem in the past, and there are no government standards for the damaged beans.

Leaving elevator operators uncertain as to how much to dock for the bad beans or wether they should be accepted at all. Mike Simundson, KELOLAND News, Mellette.

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