Complete: Post-harvest storage losses of different varieties in clamp and consequences of triazole usage

Timescale: 2006 -2007
Project Lead: P Jarvis
Project Sponsor: BBRO & BS

Project Summary

In a two-year project conducted by British Sugar plc, clamps were constructed at two sites, using beet grown on a sandy loam and clay loam soils. Storage losses for beets of varieties Salvador (a high-root-weight, low-sugar-concentration variety), Ace (a low-root-weight, high-sugar-concentration variety), and Dominika (an intermediate variety) and beet of the variety Ace grown to produce low-sugar concentration beet were compared.

Main Objectives

1) To compare the rates of sugar loss and changes in beet quality in a range of sugar beet varieties stored using the best current practices.

2) To examine the rates of sugar loss and changes in beet quality when beet of a single variety but differing in sugar concentration are stored using the best current practices.

3) To quantify the losses in store of beet treated with late applications of triazole fungicides and compare these with the losses from beet that have a non-triazole applied

Outcomes / Key Message For Growers And Industry

Generally the variety Dominika produced lower losses in clamp, particularly where it did start the storage period with a higher sugar concentration. However there is no obvious trend of higher sugar content varieties producing smaller losses in storage. So it appears that varieties may differ in their storability, but that differences are very small and in this study were not significant enough to discriminate between them. The effect of agronomy and the resulting sugar concentration of beet, does not appear to affect the sugar losses in storage The use of a triazole fungicide used to control leaf diseases (which has been shown to preserve the leaf greenness and maintain active canopy growth), has not been seen to result in greater storage losses than the use of a non-triazole (quinoxyfen) fungicide to control disease, even when a second later fungicide application is made closer to the time of harvest and store.

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