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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: SUCROSE ACCUMULATION AND RETENTION IN SUGARBEETS Title: Characterizing sugarbeet varieties for postharvest storage losses is complicated by environmental effects and genotype x environment interactions

Authors
item Campbell, Larry
item Fugate, Karen

Submitted to: Canadian Journal of Plant Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: August 2, 2006
Publication Date: March 5, 2007
Citation: Campbell, L.G., Klotz, K.L. 2007. Characterizing sugarbeet varieties for postharvest storage losses is complicated by environmental effects and genotype x environment interactions. Canadian Journal of Plant Science. 87:121-127.

Interpretive Summary: Each year millions of tons of sugarbeet roots await processing in large exposed piles. During postharvest storage, respiration consumes sucrose and even a small reduction in the rate of respiration would have substantial economic impact. This study investigated the relative importance of hybrid, environment, and hybrid X environment interactions and examined their implications in characterizing hybrids for sucrose loss during storage or developing hybrids with improved storage properties. Five hybrids produced in six environments were sampled 30 and 120 days after harvest. For the 90 days between measurements, extractable sucrose losses for individual hybrid-environment combinations ranged from 2% to 63% of the sucrose available 30 days after harvest. It appeared that the large environmental impacts and hybrid by environment interactions, compared to the relatively small hybrid influences, would complicate selecting parental lines with all or most of the storage traits desired. Furthermore, a comprehensive evaluation of commercial hybrids or breeding lines for storage traits would require considerable resources. Efforts to understand the impact of production practices and growing season environment on storage properties would probably be more productive than attempting to produce commercial hybrids with improved storage characteristics.

Technical Abstract: Each year millions of tons of sugarbeet (Beta vulgaris L.) roots await processing in large exposed piles. During postharvest storage, respiration and invert sugar formation consume sucrose and even a small reduction in these losses would have substantial economic impact. This study investigated the relative importance of hybrid, environment, and hybrid X environment interactions and examined their implications in characterizing hybrids for sucrose loss during storage or developing hybrids with improved storage properties. Glucose, fructose, and extractable sucrose concentrations and respiration rate were measured 30 and 120 days after harvest (DAH) on five hybrids produced in six environments. Environment effects were significant on both dates for all traits except fructose 30 DAH. Significant hybrid X environment interactions were observed for respiration rate 30 and 120 DAH, for extractable sucrose 120 DAH, and for glucose concentration 30 DAH. The only trait with a significant hybrid main effect was extractable sucrose 30 DAH. For the 90 days between measurements, extractable sucrose losses for individual hybrid-environment combinations ranged from 2% to 63% of the sucrose available 30 DAH. It appeared that large environmental impacts and hybrid X environment interactions, compared to the relatively small hybrid influences, would complicate selecting parental lines with all or most of the storage traits desired. Furthermore, a comprehensive evaluation of commercial hybrids or breeding lines for storage traits would require considerable resources. Efforts to understand the impact of production practices and growing season environment on storage properties would probably be more productive than attempting to produce commercial hybrids with improved storage characteristics.

Last Modified: 10/30/2014
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