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Sugar Beats North Dakota 2021


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I think they are still looking for workers and I just found out this year they are paying a bit even if you are not working. 

The harvest was planned to start October 1, but it's still too hot so it's put off till at least the 9th. I was sort of hoping to see a bit of it, but will be pulling out of Grand Forks, ND on the 8th. It's apparently a non stop activity once it starts and the beets are processed all through the winter and are kept frozen until used in huge piles at what I've heard tell, "Every crossroad for miles around. "

Met a guy who pulled in across and behind me in a "Foretravel". He finally was outside at the same time a me. He is waiting on the harvest to start. Has been here 4 years in a row, but this is the first year of getting paid while waiting for the harvest to start. Said his job is running one of the "Pilling Machines". Don't know if that's in a cab or outside all day. At first I thought it would be an endloader , but was corrected. They use conveyer's and booms and the trucks can unload on either side at the same time. Maybe I will see one set up before departure. 

 

Rod

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3 hours ago, lappir said:

Not sure if the same machine is used "In the Field". 

It isn't. I used to travel the North Platte River valley of western NE and have observed the sugar beet process from planting to delivery to the processing plant. Always thought I'd tour the plant where they extract the sugar but never did. 

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Sugar beet processing plant, Mitchel, NE.

PA164047-Western-Sugar-10162015-GLS--FIG

Edited by Kirk W
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This is our 7th year in Grand Forks doing the sugar beet harvest as full time RV'ers. We work for a local farmer and both the wife and I drive trucks hauling beets from the field to the piling station. Hopefully the heat delayed harvest will begin this Sunday at midnight. The people working at the piling stations are getting paid 4 hours for each day not working.

If anyone is interested in working, checkout Craig's list for the ND area under transportation, several farms are looking for drivers. Pay is $20-30/hr, most farms will train drivers and some provide FHU's at their farm. No special drivers licenses required to drive a farm related semi in ND/MN.

If you head South on 29 from Grand Forks, you will pass a piling station near Reynolds and a Crystal Sugar Factory in Hillsboro. From the highway, you can get a good idea of the beet storage process.

Edited by gjhunter01
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A big part of me is wanting to see a bit of the action, but I do need to depart for the HDT Rally and my next job. Busy time for me to have to get work done to the truck. Tow truck coming today at 4pm after I get off work. I guess I could have called off and had an earlier pickup, but I'm still on contract for 2 more days. 

I have heard a lot about the annual event here lately. I've visited the Sugar Factory in East Grand Forks, and remember seeing the cooling supplies (which I now know what they are) on my way into Grand Forks in June. I thought it was some sort of "Pipeline" storage lot. I guess it sort of was, but not the type I initially thought. 

Rod 

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They are in the field next door today. Cut the tops off a portion and worked the mud they had previously harvested, I'm assuming hoping it will help it dry in the wind and sun today. It's cooler than it has been and I did engage the heat portion of the Mini Split this morning. More for the cat than me. She was lying on me all night. I am a furnace for some reason, hardly ever get cold. 

No quads so far, all wheel drive with duals front and back. The Sugar plant has put together the tubes for under the beets and the "Pile creation device" seems to be at the ready. 

Rod

 

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53 minutes ago, noteven said:

Rod the pile creation machine has an old fashioned name: it’s a piler. 😃

I tried that but it is not recognized  in my dictionary. I guess since you say it's so it's safe to add it to the spell checker . 

 

Thanks, 


Rod

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Here is a video that our 12 year old farmer's son put together for their 2018 harvest (wheat, beans, corn, sugar beets) as a school project with his new drone. The beet harvest begins around the 14 min slot. That year we had an 8" snow storm and the harvest was stopped for a couple of days and then the mud driving began. These guys farm about 14,000 acres in North Dakota. The 3 combines have 40' heads or 24 corn row headers on them and are Auto Steer (meaning the seed planter coordinates are downloaded to the combine and they will follow the same path, the operator just takes control to turn the combine around). In the 12 row beet harvester, notice the operator is not driving the tractor, he is just watching the harvesting equipment behind him.The country music background was a nice touch

 

Edited by gjhunter01
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10 hours ago, bigjim said:

Is table sugar  made from sugar beets?

By far the majority of beet farmers grow them under contract to one of the sugar producers. A little more than half of all sugar made in the USA is from sugar beets while nearly all of the remainder is made from sugar cane. If you look on the shelves of your local grocery store, the packages will say which product it is and more common is beet sugar with only rarely any that isn't from one of the two plants. Pretty much anything that is made using sugar will have at least some brands that use beet sugar. Sugar beets are harvested for their roots. After sugar and molasses are extracted from roots, the remaining pulp is processed into a cattle feed.

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We have 70+ year old drivers and pilier operators, if you want to work, they will find a spot for you. Last night 1 of the 4 piler stations was shut down all night shift due to a labor shortage. Got another 1-1/2 inch more rain today, it's going to be a long harvest!

The now 15 year old farmer's son is our after school hours harvest lifter operator.

 

https://www.crystalsugar.com/

Edited by gjhunter01
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