Sweet Success of sugar beets



The region’s sugar beet industry took off in the late 1880s. The Union Sugar Company built a mill on the shore of Lake Guadalupe and the town of Betteravia was created to support company workers.


What was life like in Betteravia? 


 “You can still see traces of the town of Betteravia but it thrived when the property belonged to Union Sugar Beet Company.  The only clause in the contract with Union Sugar was that residents had to raise one crop of sugar beets, the rest of the year they raised what they wanted.  My family farmed broccoli, cauliflower, some lettuce, beans, and sugar beets. It was a company town, they had schools, a church, a gas station, and all these little bungalows for the people. Union Sugar would have their yearly BBQ for all of the ranchers who grew beets for them at the company park. The BBQ had entertainment and they would give each grower a 100 pound sack of sugar.” 

—John Perry  

Union Sugar 2