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Who is going to win a study tour to Chile?

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This season, we’re running #Beet150, a competition for all sugar beet growers looking to be the best and make a record of 150t/ha or more adjusted yield or grow the highest yielding field lifted by 30th November 2018.

By making every possible percentage increase in your sugar beet yields, you can make the biggest impact on your crop's profitability.

We’re here to help by sharing your tips and tricks and giving advice along the way.

Together we can #Beet150.



On-farm #Beet150 update

How can you use weed control strategies to maximise your beet yields?

Meet the entrants to our #Beet150 competition!

25 growers from East Anglia, Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire, South Yorkshire and beyond have entered our #Beet150 competition. These entrants will soon be competing to win a study trip to Chile and learning more about growing beet and increasing yield performance along the way.


#Beet150 growers

Monitor and record as much as possible

With only a 16mm average of rain during the summer of 2017 on Barbara’s farm, rainfall is recorded on a weekly basis to support irrigation scheduling and ensure the crop avoids suffering from drought stress. Based on this knowledge, Barbara is also investing in new irrigation systems to ensure her crops are always suitably irrigated.


Ensure your employees follow best practice

To make sure that her employees know why they’re taking certain measures on the farm, she makes sure that they know all about the research provided by beet processor Empress IANSA. This way, they know the importance of the advice and are more likely to follow it.


Be precise

Barbara and her team of 13 employees make sure that each task is timed correctly to make sure that they gain the greatest possible benefit. Starting in February with soil analysis to make sure that the pH is correct before cultivation, they also time nitrogen applications carefully to avoid scorching the crop and stunting growth.


Keep on top of weeds and pests

To defend against extreme weeds and pests, seed treatments provide the first means of defence. Foliar-applied insecticides are used from about 45 days after planting (once threshold levels are breached) until adult plant resistance kicks in. Crops are inspected by a team of technical advisers from IANSA every 12 days until the threat has passed.


Follow the latest advice on disease control

Rhizoctonia is widespread in Chile. Most growers will use resistant varieties and be careful not to over-irrigate crops on infected soils to minimise pressure. With this, powdery mildew and cercospora growers follow the latest advice from IANSA and monitor crops closely to make sure fungicide applications are timed for the greatest effect.


Good cost control

An industry average yield of 106.4 t/ha in 2016/17 may be impressive, but it needs to be seen in context. Sugar beet in Chile can be expensive to produce. Depending on how she has managed her currency exposure and input spend, Barbara estimates her break-even yield at between 80-90 t/ha (adjusted).


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Sign up for the Bayer sugar beet Crop Focus emails to stay up-to-date on sugar beet agronomy advice and to follow our #Beet150 competition entrants