By Tom Knudsen
WAHPETON, N.D. - Sugarbeet seed issue took place March 30-31st and April 3-5th. The planting level for the 2017 crop was set at a range of 1.25 to 1.35 acres per share of stock. Planting was underway the second week of April. By mid-April, 13,000 acres (0.18 acres per share) had been planted. By the end of April, 58,000 acres had been planted. Planting was essentially completed by May 15th when 95,000 acres (1.32 acres per share) were planted. Rainfall was timely for the planting of the 2017 crop which led to good germination and emergence. There was a significant freeze period the mornings of April 27th, 28th, and 29th when temperatures dropped to the upper 20’s. Little damage was noted on emerged and subterranean seedlings for the most part. Approximately 1,000 acres were replanted out of the total 95,000 acres planted this past season. Replant was primarily due to wind, crust and, to a lesser extent, frost.
Crop samples in July indicated another very good crop was in the works. That was confirmed a month later when the August samples were taken. The ag staff put the yield at 31.9 tons per acre. The initial tentative corral on harvested acres was set at 15 percent; meaning 85 percent of the acres were eligible for harvest. That number was ultimately reduced in two stages to five percent.
Preharvest was underway Monday, September 11th. Main harvest commenced October 4th. Harvest 2017 was a lengthy drawn out affair due to intermittent warm temperatures which required numerous shutdowns. Harvest ended November 1st. Minn-Dak Farmers Cooperative growers harvested 90,172 acres and delivered a total of 2,909,615 tons of sugarbeets. The crop averaged 17.0 percent sugar content, 89.4 percent purity, had a tare of 2.5 percent and yielded 32.3 tons per acre.
Reports From All North American Sugar Beet Growing Regions
The Amalgamated Sugar Company
The 2016 crop year began with a near perfect early spring. Virtually all growers established uniform, healthy sugarbeet plant populations in their fields with minimal replanted acres. The momentum for ideal sugarbeet growing conditions continued into the summer with moderate daytime temperatures. These temperatures helped to reduce stress on the sugarbeet crop which can sometimes hamper optimal growth and sugar production. All the normal diseases were present, but lacked environmental conditions conducive for optimal disease development.
A look back at 2016 and ahead to 2017
If there are two words out there that farmers never wish to hear used together, it’s PESTICIDE RESISTANCE. Unfortunately, growers had to face this issue head on with Cercospora Leaf Spot (CLS) in some portions of the upper Midwest during the 2016 growing season. The fungal pathogen Cercospora beticola, which causes CLS, is now confirmed resistant to a widely used fungicide.
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Reports from All North American Beet Regions
Amalgamated Sugar Company
Early harvest results of the 2013 crop pointed to a large crop. These results were somewhat surprising due to the difficult 2013 springtime weather. There were 82,512 acres replanted — 44% of the planted acres. A 3% voluntary overplant was allowed in 2013, but not all of the allowed overplant was planted. There were 186,321 acres contracted with 186,176 acres planted. There were 712 acres lost due to environmental conditions and lack of water in some areas where storage water was short.
Temperatures during the growing season were conducive for good yields. With that comes higher mineralization in the soil, resulting in lower sugar contents. Early harvest sugar content was 14.21% in Mini-Cassia and 15.00% in the Twin Falls district, both of which were below average for early harvest.
The 2013 Amalgamated crop set another yield record of 36.3 tons per acre. However, the sugar content was a disappointing 15.87 %. Harvest was ideal, and the beets were put into the piles in good condition. — John Schorr
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Began With Michigan Sugar in 1970s;
Minn-Dak President & CEO Since 2001
Among the Michigan Sugar Company (MSC) officers listed in the Manual of Sugar Companies, 1954/55 was “David C. Roche, Sales Mgr.” The career MSC manager’s son, David H. Roche, was seven years old when that directory was published in 1955.
Editor & General Manager of The Sugarbeet Grower