| ||This province in northeastern Argentina, named for the Jesuit missions founded here between the sixteenth and eighteenth centuries, was originally covered with tropical forests. For nearly a century, however, European settlers transformed the landscape by deforesting a major portion of the territory in order to exploit the red land, which is rich in iron oxide and very fertile. Working along the contours of the land, leaving strips of grass between the furrows in order to reduce erosion, they developed various crops such as cotton, tobacco, tea, mate, sunflower, rice, and citrus. Since the end of the 1990s, the industrial cultivation of transgenic soy, resistant to herbicides made of glyphosate, became the most important plantation in Argentina, with nearly 19 million hectares. Nowadays, soy represents more than half of the cultivated soil in the country. In ten years, the consumption of herbicides made of glyphosates increased from 28 million liters to 200 million liters, while in the meantime 100.000 agriculturists were forced to abandon their farms.
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