GRAND FORKS, N.D. – The 58th annual International Sugarbeet Institute (ISBI) is slated for March 11-12 at the Alerus Center in Grand Forks, N.D., and will feature keynote presentations by Courtney Gaine, PhD, RD, president and CEO for the Sugar Association, and Scott Herndon, vice president and general counsel for the American Sugarbeet Growers Association (ASGA).

Both presentations get started at 10:50 a.m., with Dr. Gaine speaking on Wednesday, March 11, and Herndon speaking on Thursday, March 12.

Prior to her appointment as president and CEO for the Sugar Association, Dr. Courtney Gaine served as vice president of Scientific Affairs. She was previously a senior science program manager at the North American branch of the International Life Sciences Institute, a public, non-profit scientific foundation that advances the understanding and application of science related to the nutritional quality and safety of the food supply.

As vice president and general counsel for the ASGA, Scott Herndon, as well as the rest of the ASGA, work to unite sugarbeet growers throughout the United States and promote the common interest of state and regional beet grower associations, which includes legislative and international representation and public relations. The ASGA’s member associations represent 10,000 family farmers in all 11 sugarbeet producing states.

One of the appeals of the show is the requirement that all exhibitors must have products or services related directly to sugarbeet production. This assures visitors that they will be rubbing elbows with those truly interested in the growth of the sugarbeet industry.

The ISBI is the largest exhibit of sugarbeet equipment, related products and services in North America. The show is held in Grand Forks and Fargo on alternating years. Show hours for this year’s ISBI are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., on March 11, and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., the following day.

The show started in 1963 in Crookston, Minn., and eventually grew into a two-day trade show and educational institute for all growers. It became international in 1980 when Manitoba growers joined forces with the show.

Nearly 4,000 growers and others associated with the sugarbeet industry are expected to attend this year’s show, which will also involve over 120 trade show exhibitors. Advancements in equipment and production methods have become consistently bigger and more sophisticated through the years. This show will contain millions of dollars’ worth of machinery and equipment that is used in sugarbeet production.

The Red River Valley Sugarbeet Museum in Crookston, Minn., has a nifty display complete with antique sugarbeet equipment. Videos and photos of long-ago farming bring to light the expanse of changes that have taken place from hand hoed and harvested to 36-row planters and 12-row harvesters.

The doors for the show open each day at 9 a.m., and admission to the show and parking are free. The show will begin with a free breakfast each day. A free lunch will also be offered each day at 12 p.m.

The ISBI organizing committee consists of exhibitor representatives, sugarbeet specialists from NDSU and the University of Minnesota, each of the three Upper Midwest sugar cooperatives (both grower and company representatives), and the Red River Valley Sugarbeet Growers Association.

Questions regarding the 2020 International Sugarbeet Institute should be directed to Dr. Mohamed Khan, ISBI committee chairman, at (281) 790-8596 or

The following is a schedule of events for the 58th annual International Sugarbeet Institute:

Wednesday, March 11

9:00 a.m., Doors open/visit exhibits

9:00-9:30 a.m., Free breakfast for all vendors and attendees

10:45 a.m., Program announcements/recognition

10:50 a.m., Dr. Courtney Gaine of the Sugar Association

12:00 p.m., Free lunch/visit exhibits

5:00 p.m., Doors close

Thursday, March 12

9:00 a.m., Doors open/visit exhibits

9:00-9:30 a.m., Free breakfast for all vendors and attendees

10:45 a.m., Program announcements/recognition

10:50 a.m., Scott Herndon of the ASGA

12:00 p.m., Free lunch/visit exhibits

3:00 p.m., Doors close