Our CommunityWorld's Largest Sugar Beet
The sugar beet industry in the United States dates back to 1836 with the Beet Sugar Society of Philadelphia. In 1870 the first successful factory was built in Alvarado (Union City), California. Here, in the very heart of the rich Red River Valley of the North, the first sugar beets were grown in 1918 and the first sugar beet factory opened in East Grand Forks, Minnesota in 1926. Over the next 50 years, five more factories opened in the Red River Valley – Moorhead & Crookston, Minnesota; Drayton, Hillsboro & Wahpeton, North Dakota. Today, sugar beets are grown on more than 500,000 acres in the Red River Valley and make up approximately 57 percent of the total sugar beet acres planted in the United States. To commemorate the remarkable impact that sugar beets have had on agriculture, Halstad, Minnesota is home to the World’s Largest Sugar Beet!