POWELL - The annual sugar beet harvest in northern Wyoming has started earlier than usual.
The Sept. 4 harvest start is one of the earliest for Western Sugar Co.'s Lovell factory district.
Western Sugar is forecasting a beet crop that averages about 30 tons an acre. The district's 2011 sugar beet crop came in at 29 tons to the acre.
Growers in the Lovell district planted about 17,000 acres of sugar beets this year.
The company officials plan their factory processing campaign around a target completion date of next Feb. 10. They need to have the beets through the factory by that time because weather in February and March is too unpredictable to have beets in storage on the ground.