Another shortfall seen in Soviet grain harvest
The Soviet grain crop is facing difficulties in some key growing areas, and Western farm experts say the harvest is likely to fall short of the Kremlin target for the sixth straight year.
The chief problem this year is a lack of moisture in the soil after months of dry weather. Official media reports have indicated mounting alarm in Moscow over the likely impact of the continuing drought.
Most analysts also said there was still time for growing conditions to improve and lead to a better harvest than in 1983 which, although below target, was the best harvest in five years.