Food: Sad Tomatoes

To perfect the tomato that makes the soup that Campbell sells by the millions of cans, botanists have been working for years on different strains of Lycopersicon esculentum. Last week the soup-tomato crop was ripening right on time, as the scientists intended, but for once its punctuality was a disaster. Just when the bumper crop was ready to be picked from California to New Jersey, the Campbell Soup Co. found itself saddled with a strike.

With thousands of workers off the job at company plants across the country, Maryland broilers destined for Campbell chicken-noodle soup were in danger of turning leathery....

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