The Sugar Industry Biotech Council provides science-based information regarding biotechnology and other technological advances in sugar beet and sugar cane crops. This image shows sugar beets that grow under ground.


Innovations in Sugar Beets – Key Benefits

Sugar – whether from sugar beets or sugar cane, or from sugar crops grown using conventional, biotech or organic methods – is the same pure and natural sugar that consumers have always enjoyed. The pulp and molasses also are nutritionally equivalent. Benefits of biotechnology-enhanced sugar beets include:

  • Protecting the Sugar Supply
    In North America, hurricanes, droughts, floods, frosts and more can cause sugar supply challenges. Because sugar is an important ingredient in the North American food supply, it is vital to have a sustainable and geographically diverse supply of sugar and sugar by-products to support the North American food industry for consumers. Biotechnology-enhanced sugar beets are an important tool that can be used by growers to maintain the availability of the domestic sugar supply for North American consumers.
  • Lessening Impacts on the Environment
    The Roundup Ready® system in sugar beets requires fewer herbicide applications. Fewer trips across the field mean reduced greenhouse gas emissions, reduced soil erosion, reduced soil compaction and enhanced water conservation.
    Environmental Assessment of Roundup Ready Sugar beet: A Case Study of Four Idaho Sugar Beet Fields, 2006 (181K PDF)
    Authors: Ronda E. Hirnyck and Don Morishita, University of Idaho
  • Helping Farmers
    The technology found in Roundup Ready products addresses one of growers’ biggest and costliest problems – weed control. Roundup agricultural herbicides provide excellent control of a wide range of weeds, which reduces weed competition and improves productivity.

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