Submitted to: Sugar Producer Magazine
Publication Type: Trade Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: April 22, 2009
Publication Date: June 12, 2009
Citation: Strausbaugh, C.A. 2009. Reducing sucrose loss in sugarbeet storage. Sugar Producer Magazine. June/July:18-19.
Sucrose loss in sugarbeet storage is a considerable problem which is negatively influenced by environmental conditions, stress on roots from disease problems in the field, rough handling during harvest and transport, and microbial growth. To reduce sucrose loss in sugarbeet storage, studies were initiated to establish a storage cultivar selection program. In 2006 and 2007, 30 or more commercial sugarbeet cultivars were grown in soil naturally infested with BNYVV, the causal agent of rhizomania. At harvest, two root samples from each plot were collected and used to establish percent sugar. Additional samples were placed on top of an indoor pile (set point 1.7°C) and inside an outdoor pile in a randomized complete block design with four replications. After 142 and 159 days in indoor storage, sucrose reduction ranged from 13 to 90% in 2007 and 57 to 100% in 2008. Outdoor storage sucrose reduction ranged from 13 to 32% in 2007 and 28 to 60% in 2008. An average of 31 and 45% of the root surface was covered with fungal growth in 2007 and 2008, respectively. Cultivars that retained the most sucrose had resistance to BNYVV and the least fungal growth and weight loss. Indoor storage with BNYVV infested roots allowed for the most consistent cultivar separation and will potentially lead to cultivars being selected for improved storability.