02/13/2013 11:25 EST | Updated 04/15/2013 05:12 EDT

Federal government spends $600,000 on sugar beet biofuel, bio-glycol study

LETHBRIDGE, Alta. - The federal government is spending $600,000 to help the sugar beet industry find new uses for the sweet tuber.

The money goes to the Alberta Sugar Beet Growers to study if beets can be used as a renewable alternative to petrochemicals.

The products that will be looked at include biofuel and bio-glycol, which can be used in plastics, polyester fibre and resin.

The study will also look at whether using sugar beets for this purpose is commercially viable.

Agriculture Canada says the spending will help create new jobs and bolster economic growth.