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According to the USDA’s Crop Progress Report released on Monday, only 36 percent of Michigan’s expected sugarbeet crop has been planted so far this year, compared with 98 percent by this time last year.
In addition, a good deal of land in the Red River Valley is still flooded and underwater, which has delaying planting even further.
“I think we’re going to be okay, but because of the equipment and technology that farmers have today, they can plant this crop very quickly,” says Luther Markwart, Executive Vice President of the American Sugarbeet Growers Association, who says he expects the warmer and drier conditions this week in Michigan to help sugarbeet producers expedite the planting process.
“The [sugarbeet] crop is a very resilient crop, and if you’ve got enough moisture [and] we get enough heat units going, I think we’re going to be pretty good,” says Markwart.
Click BELOW to hear C.J. Miller’s full conversation with Luther Markwart with the American Sugarbeet Growers Association about the late start to spring planting.