Sugarbeet research is key to increasing yields

Incorporating sugarbeet research will increase yield, quality and profitability. Producers can learn more at the Michigan/Ontario Sugarbeet Research Reporting session on Jan. 26, 2012.

Sugarbeet management practices have changed greatly in the last 10 years. Research on new production practices will continue in a steady stream for the foreseeable future. Keeping abreast of current research in sugarbeets is a key factor and will need to be sought out by managers of farm operations. Producers that don’t participate in educational events or study the latest research reports can rapidly fall behind, thus reducing profitability and competitiveness.

No sugarbeet producer in today’s competitive environment would think about planting the same variety as they did 10 years ago. The reason is genetics of varieties change yearly incorporating high yield, improved sugar, and increased disease resistance. This renders old varieties obsolete in as little as two to three years. The same can be said about new production practices that may enhance yields or reduce input cost. A few recent examples for sugarbeets include research that has greatly improved Rhizoctonia root rot control, minimized cultivation and developed spray models for improved Cercospora leaf spot control. Sugarbeet yields have increased dramatically in 15 years and sugar content has greatly improved. Researchers are always looking for ways to improve production practices and efficiency

In January 2012, the Research Educational Advisory Committee (REACh) research report will be printed and mailed to each sugarbeet producer. This 60-page report combines research from Michigan Sugar Company, Sugarbeet Advancement, Michigan State University and others. This document will take some time to study, but the time spent can be very profitable.

Sugar producers should also consider attending the Michigan/Ontario Sugarbeet Research Reporting session. This program will include 15 researchers that present the latest production research related to sugarbeets. Each educational presentation will be 15 minutes long and promises to be a fast-moving program. This one event will be held on January 26, 2012 at the Double Tree Hotel and Convention Center from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. in Bay City, Mich. Cost of the program will be $30 per individual and will cover lunch and materials. Registration is requested by calling the Saginaw County Michigan State University Extension office at 989-758-2500.

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