In many countries the technical quality of sugar beet is assessed with the Brunswick formula, which includes the content of K-, Na, and á-amino-nitrogen. Total soluble nitrogen content is herein estimated via the analysis á-amino-N. The objectives of the present study were to estimate the genetic variability for nitrogenous compounds in the current sugar beet varieties and to determine differences in the proportion of the compounds of total soluble nitrogen (á-amino-nitrogen, betaine, nitrate) in these sugar beet varieties. 51 sugar beet varieties were tested in multi-environmental field trials in 2000 and 2001. First results from 2000 show highly significant differences between the varieties for total soluble nitrogen, á-amino-nitrogen, nitrate and betaine content. It is furthermore demonstrated that á-amino-nitrogen and total soluble nitrogen content are not always closely correlated.