It’s time to be sharing the road with trucks hauling sugar beets to area processing plants or piling stations. Michigan Sugar, an owner-grower cooperative, said its nearly 900 growers will be hauling beets harvested from 154,000 acres in 20-Michigan counties and Ontario, Canada. The planting was about 3,000 fewer acres than planned, due mainly to weather conditions, earlier this year.

A company spokesman reminds drivers to use caution around the trucks as drivers will be making wide turns and need extra time to stop.

The beets will be processed at plants in Bay City, Caro, Croswell and Sebewaing starting Monday, September 9th. The slicing operation begins Tuesday, September 10th, producing over a billion pounds of sugar, under the “Pioneer” and “Big Chief” brands, by March 15th.

The Bay City-based company is the third largest of nine sugar processing companies in the U.S., employing an estimated 930 full time workers and an additional 1,100 seasonal employees. Michigan Sugar is Huron County’s largest employer, the second largest employer in Bay and Sanilac Counties and the number 3 employer in Tuscola County.

Michigan Sugar’s annual harvest gets underway September 9th. (Map courtesy of Michigan Sugar Company)