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Crop Science Abstract -

Evaluation of Wax Coatings for Improving Sugarbeet Storage1


This article in CS

  1. Vol. 13 No. 5, p. 567-570
    Received: Apr 14, 1973

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  1. R. E. Wyse and
  2. D. R. Dilley2



The effect of paraffin and a commercial wax coating on the respiration rate and weight loss of large and small sugarbeet (Beta vulgaris L.) roots was determined.

Wax coatings on sugarbeets were most beneficial in reducing respiration rates under conditions where rates were high and gaseous diffusion became a dominant factor in regulating respiration rates. The respiration rate of the beet root was primarily a function of the internal oxygen concentration for a given size of beet.

The internal oxygen concentration reflects the resistance of the beet to gaseous diffusion and surface area. The sensitivity of the internal oxygen concentration to increased diffusion resistance makes surface coating appear to be a practical method of lowering internal 02 and thus reducing respiration losses.

The observation that wax coatings reduce desiccation and respiration rates suggests that spraying surface beets with a wax coating and then covering them with straw may prevent desiccation on the surface of commercial storage piles and thus reduce sucrose losses.

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