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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Storage

Authors
item Campbell, Larry
item Fugate, Karen

Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: August 2, 2004
Publication Date: April 1, 2006
Citation: Campbell, L.G., Klotz, K.L. 2006. Storage. In: Draycott, A.P. Sugar Beet. Oxford, UK: Blackwell Publishing Ltd. p. 387-408.

Interpretive Summary: After harvest, most of the sugarbeet crop is stored in large exposed piles for up to 200 days awaiting processing. During this time respiration, rots, accumulation of compounds that interfere with sugar extraction, and physical deterioration decrease the amount of sugar processors are able to extract from the stored roots. Respiration is the largest source of loss and may account for up to 80% of the sugar lost during storage. The second major source of sugar loss is the conversion of sugar to other compounds. In addition to the direct loss of sugar, some of the compounds produced interfere with sugar extraction, causing additional losses. Rots that occur during storage can be of considerable economic importance, but their incidence is erratic. All of these processes are related to environmental conditions, primarily temperature and humidity, and the condition of the roots being placed in storage. Mechanical damage to the roots during harvest and piling increases respiration rates and provides sites for fungal infection. Losses incurred during storage represent a substantial revenue loss to the sugar industry. When multiplied over the large mass of roots processed and time in storage, even small reductions can have significant economic impact. In many cases, close attention to details and relative minor changes in procedures can reduce losses significantly with no, or small increases in operating costs.

Technical Abstract: After harvest, most of the sugarbeet (Beta vulgaris) crop is stored in large exposed piles for up to 200 days awaiting processing. During this time respiration, rots, accumulation of compounds that interfere with sucrose extraction, and physical deterioration decrease the amount of sucrose processors are able to extract from the stored roots. Respiration is the largest source of loss and may account for up to 80% of the sucrose lost during storage. The second major source of sucrose loss is the conversion of sucrose to other compounds. In addition to the direct loss of sucrose, some of the compounds produced interfere with sucrose extraction, causing additional losses. Rots that occur during storage can be of considerable economic importance, but their incidence is erratic. All of these processes are related to environmental conditions, primarily temperature and humidity, and the condition of the roots being placed in storage. Mechanical damage to the roots during harvest and piling increases respiration rates and provides sites for fungal infection. Losses incurred during storage represent a substantial revenue loss to the sugar industry. When multiplied over the large mass of roots processed and time in storage, even small reductions can have significant economic impact. In many cases, close attention to details and relative minor changes in procedures can reduce losses significantly with no, or small increases in operating costs.

Last Modified: 12/21/2014
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