Harvesting and cleaning of sugar beet lead to root damage, which increases storage losses due to wound healing and by causing entry points for pathogens. This study aimed at quantifying the effects of variety and site on the tissue strength of sugar beet roots, and moreover, to evaluate the impact of tissue strength on damage and storage losses. For this purpose, field trials with three varieties were carried out at six sites, three in Germany and the others in Belgium, the Netherlands and Sweden in 2018. Texture analysis and storage trials were conducted in Göttingen. Puncture and compression measurements revealed differences in tissue strength between varieties and sites. Drought stress during the vegetation period significantly reduced the tissue strength. Tissue strength of sugar beet roots turned out to be an environmental stable variety characteristic. It is not possible to draw conclusions from tissue strength to storage losses at a site, since many other factors, such as growing conditions, diseases and damage due to harvester settings have a strong impact. However, tissue strength might be an indicator for damage susceptibility and storage losses of sugar beet varieties.
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