Lakeshore May Experiment With Beet Juice De-Icer

A unique use for beets is being revisited by the Town of Lakeshore.

Beet juice has been used as a de-icing agent on roads in other areas of Canada, and no, it doesn't turn your car red.

AM800 News reported the possiblity of the town adopting the practice in January and councillor Steven Wilder says it's something the town hasn't closed the door on yet.

"Beet juice is used in other municipalities, especially up in Northern Ontario, Quebec as well. I believe London, Chatham-Kent, even some municipalities up near Toronto, use the beet juice application," says Wilder. "It's used independently and in conjunction with traditional salt."

The report brought before council did indicate some issues with equipment in other areas of the province.

Council discussed using two vehicles that would be capable of spreading the fluid for a trial run next winter. Should it work, Wilder says the benefits are too good to ignore.

"It's more environmentally friendly, it is more economical, it makes the salt more effective and perhaps more importantly it reduces what we call the scatter of the salt," says Wilder. "The beet juice application allows the salt to stick to or adhere to the road. Making it last longer and ultimately making it more effective."

Wilder says other regions have used up to 30% less salt or have eliminated salt use altogether.

The town's public works department has been tasked with exploring the possibility of retrofitting their current vehicles for a test run.