Harvest: 2023-11-14. Published: 2023-11-27. Updated 2023-12-21.

A big thanks to the team from Björnstorp & Svenstorp who fought traffic and mud to harvest the crop in what is also a crazy busy time for them. It was approximately 6.5 hours of harvest, at 1.05 ha/hour.


As seems to always be the case, there were a lot of conflicting concerns. We wanted to use the harvester from Björnstorp and Svenstorp, as it has the yeild mapping equipment on it. We wanted to ensure we harvested in time for delivery (was 22 November in the first days of the week). We didn’t want to ruin the field, that was already wet. We wanted to avoid the forecast 40 mm rain on Wednesday. We wanted to not be affected by the forecast colder (-2 C) on the Thursday. In the end, Tuesday the 14th seemed best.

Then came Thrusday and Friday, when the factory was closed for emergency maintance. It was announced later on the Friday that the factor would be closed all weekend. Delivery was pushed back to 27 November.

Then came Saturday morning when the factory exploded. As of 27 November, we didn’t know was happening with delivery. The only thing we could do is manage the clamp as best possible. So, we went over to Storage mode (follow link for summary of storage and delivery).


We, like a lot of the rest of the industry in Sweden, got caught in the explosion at the factory. Instead of deliver 22 November, it was 19 December. This means that the yield data might be underestimated somewhat. We delivered 549 tonnes, at dirt-tare of 10.0% and a pol sugar of 17.62. That is 87.05 tonnes of sugar, or 13.6 tonne per hectare.

Drone image from 2023-11-13. Yellow rectangles are 61 1 x 8m harvest plots.

Leaf diseases

There were a couple of spots that looked like cercospora. One of the worst is up against the harvest plot in the top right corner of the drone photo: a brown spot can be seen. Otherwise, the overall health of the crop was pretty good.


Very little to speak about. Compared to many other crops in Sweden this year, volunteer oilseed rape was not a problem. There was certainly a few hundred plants, but only two or three of these stood above the sugar beet crop.


When the sugar beet field from 2023 was ploughed, we got the feedback that it was an absolute mess after harvest. We knew this would happen given the soil moisture conditions, but it was a cost we decided to pay. The Terranimo model was applied to the 2023 harvest to see if soil compaction might be an issue.

Machine specs:

  • Standard 3-axel sugar beet harvester (Ropa Tiger 3)
  • Weight, 36 t gross + 24 t load = 60 tonne
  • Tire types, taken from brochure: Front 800/65 R 32 (Michelin MegaXBib), Middle 1050/50 R 32 (Michelin MegaXBib), Rear 1000/50 R 25 (Michelin MegaXBib).
  • Axel loads, taken from this study: Should be 34/33/33, but model won’t let me change them. Stuck at 40/33/27.

Soil physical specs:

  • Both topsoil (matjord) and (alven) taken as the same
  • nmh sa LL: a somewhat organic material poor, sandy, light clay.

Soil moisture specs:

  • Both moist and wet assessed


On the left, moist. On the right, wet. The tire symbols sitting in the red zone is not good.

It should be remembered that the distribution of weight on the axels might be off. Looking at the pressure from the front axel (with it carrying 40% of the total weight of 60 tonnes):


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