Beet for Biogas

Beet is already regarded as a very high performing biogas feedstock and together with maize it is one of the most suitable crops for use in Anaerobic Digestion (AD).

Making use of the latest breeding technology alongside precision cultivation and drilling methods ensures beet dry matter yields are both stable and reliable, giving added value for both the growers and AD operators.

The processing technology for biogas beet has developed rapidly in recent years and with improved technology, the processing cost per tonne of beet has fallen significantly.


High Yields

  • High dry matter yields
  • High methane output per hectare
  • High acreage efficiency on farm
  • High yield potential on cooler sites

Fast Gas

  • Very fast digestion of the beet in the fermenter (5 - 10 days)
  • High digestibility of dry matter from beet – 95% (ODM)

Innovative substrate supply

  • Increased process stability with the addition of 20-30% beet in the substrate
  • Improved mixing ability of substrate
  • Increase in digester loading thus better utilisation of digester capacity
  • High flexibility in harvest date
  • Long growing season can compensate for weather fluctuations

The methane yield from the organic dry substance of the root is approximately 400 N l / kg VS ( N l = standard litres)

 Our energy segment - KWS beet for biogas

The highest dry matter yield (DMY) per hectare is the key requirement for economic feedstock production.  This represents the most effective feedstock supply and efficient land use.  For the UK, beet offers perhaps the best mix of cost effectiveness and high yields  Key breeding goals target specific characteristics for energy use such as high dry matter yield, but also secondary characteristics such as low soil tare, smoothness, ease of harvesting and resistance traits, such as resistance to leaf diseases, nematodes or Rhizomania.

For more information on individual species, please click on the names in the list to the right.  Gerty KWS and LISSY KWS were the first two varieties to be approved specifically for the production of biomass.  In addition to a high dry matter yield (DMY), these varieties are also notable for their low dirt tare levels and ‘easy to clean’ attributes. In a variety trial (SV-biomass, IFZ Göttingen) located in Germany in 2011 over 7 locations to assess all varieties marketed in Germany for biogas production Gerty KWS came out on top for dry matter yield and low soil tare.

These varieties are not on the UK Recommended List for Sugar Beet varieties and are not suitable for sugar processing.

Energy Beet Guide

Energy Beet Guide

Growers need to maximise DM yield in the field and to use this in the AD plant to ensure the highest level of efficiency.

Energybeet Variety Leaflet 2016

Biogas Feed Calculator

KWS has been working within the European biogas industry for over 15 years. We recognise that to get the best out of any biogas facility plant operators need a mix of feedstocks that maximise gas output.

We have developed a calculator designed to help those planning or operating biogas facilities to assess the relative performance of a range of crops within the digester.