See how sugar is harvested from the sugar beet in this classic and catchy 1979 video from Sesame Street: Beet Beet, Sugar Beet. Some background from Wikipedia:
The sugar beet has a conical, white, fleshy root (a taproot) with a flat crown. The plant consists of the root and a rosette of leaves. Sugar is formed by photosynthesis in the leaves and is then stored in the root.
The root of the beet contains 75% water, about 20% sugar, and 5% pulp. The exact sugar content can vary between 12 and 21% sugar, depending on the cultivar and growing conditions. Sugar is the primary value of sugar beet as a cash crop. The pulp, insoluble in water and mainly composed of cellulose, hemicellulose, lignin, and pectin, is used in animal feed. The byproducts of the sugar beet crop, such as pulp and molasses, add another 10% to the value of the harvest.
This video inside the Michigan Sugar Company shares the entire process.
Related DIY: This step-by-step how-to-at-home at Instructables.
Watch these videos next: How Maple Syrup is Made, how to make a Renaissance sugar sculpture, and why do carrots taste sweeter in the winter?
Plus, watch Sugar: Hiding in plain sight.
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