ISSUE #462

462 - Variety Selection Foundation for 2005 Crop


American Crystal Sugar Company shareholders are fortunate to have many excellent fully approved varieties to choose from. Very good specialty varieties with resistance to Aphanomyces or Rhizomania are also available. Resistance levels for Aphanomyces have greatly improved in the last 5 years. Excellent yielding Rhizomania varieties have been available for several years. For 2005 Rhizomania resistant varieties with very good yields AND much improved sugar content will be available. Variety selection this fall lays the foundation for a successful 2005 crop. Growers must carefully educate themselves to make the best choice possible. Gold Standard Variety Selection

Maximizing yield and quality demands selecting varieties specifically for each field. Choosing the specific disease resistance required. Choosing the variety best suited for ease of harvesting on heavy clay soils when they get wet. Selecting for high vigor and emergence ability in fields with a history of poor stand establishment. Using better sugar per ton varieties in fields with soil types that make it difficult to achieve at least factory average sugar content. Using better tonnage varieties where high quality is easier to attain than high yield.

Factors Influencing Variety Choices For 2005

  • Incidence and severity of specific diseases
  • Past sugar/acre history of fields
  • Past sugar/ton history of fields
  • Stand establishment needs for strong vigor and emergence
  • Past cercospora leafspot challenges
  • Variety architecture and harvesting problems versus soil type
  • Available nitrogen level of the field

Make Variety Choices on the Right Information

American Crystal Sugar Company shareholders are provided with tremendous amounts of data to base variety selection decisions on. These information sources are listed in order of value and reliability in the editor's opinion.

  • Coded variety trials
  • Growers own farm records
  • Grower Practices System database by specific county, piler, or factory
  • Agriculturists observations and experience
  • Strip trials and agriculturists observations and experience
  • Other - caps, jackets, cups, clocks, knives, etc.

Internet Tools Available

Shareholders can access several decision making tools on the American Crystal Sugar Company website at that could provide insight into making best variety choices for each field.

  • Rhizomania Variety Resistance Calculator
    Go to Agronomy and Ag Tools then Ag Calculators. This application will help the user determine whether or not they need to use a Rhizomania resistant variety.
  • Seed Calculator
    By filling in the required data in the shaded boxes this application will determine how much seed to purchase for a field or the entire farm next year.
  • Variety and Freight Calculator
    This decision making tool incorporates freight rates for piling stations versus tonnage or sugar type varieties yields into wise decisions based in part on crop hauling costs.
  • Official Coded Trials Data
    The 2004 official trial data will be available in mid-November. It's quick and easy to review data online. If you raise beets in Polk, Norman and Clay counties and parts of other selected counties be sure to review the Rhizomania site coded Variety Trial Data.
  • Sugarbeet Variety Selector
    This Internet tool will help growers narrow down variety selection choices to those most suited to past history of production on his farm or an individual field. Suggested variety choices are likely to increase on-farm profit potential.

Value and Benefit of Best Variety Use

  • Maximize recoverable sugar per acre
  • Maximize recoverable sugar per ton
  • Control of Rhizomania, Aphanomyces, Cercospora, Fusarium
  • Reduce storage losses from diseased beets in piles
  • Lower fungicide cost
  • Improved factory operations and recovery



  • System has positively impacted $/A and $/T
  • $/A increased by an average of 1.3% per year

New Seed Type OPTIONS

Growers should consider whether Tachigaren 20 gram rate, PAT and Ultipro, pelleted seed or minimum buildup seed coatings have a place on their farm in 2004. Talk to your Ag staff about these options. Choose a seed type best suited for use in your planter.

NDSU Survey Needed

Please fill out and return the NDSU/U of MN Production Practice Survey to Dr. Alan Dexter. Survey results are very important to ensure wise use of grower check-off dollars for research and education. Its available in the shareholder access area of this web site.

Rhizomania Varieties Perform Well in 2004

Grower Practices records for 2004 show Rhizomania resistant varieties produced 6,259 lbs/acre recoverable sugar on 40,000 acres. Conventional varieties produced 6,329 lbs/acre recoverable sugar on over 400,000 acres, only 70 lbs/A different. Rhizomania resistant varieties performed well in 2004 where needed and even better ones are available for 2005.