RUMINANT NEWS

TRUE WEST BEEF PROCESSING FACILITY IN S. IDAHO

Agri Beef Company, Idaho, and a group of cattle ranchers and feeders in the Northwest have partnered to expand  and announced plans to build a processing plant in Jerome, Idaho. This region has very few packing plants, and ranchers are excited about the new facility, hoping it will provide more competition for their cattle and better prices. The entire industry in that region direly need more packing plant capacity. This however a good news for Idaho that a new plant of 500-head-per-day capacity will be built soon.

Previously, raised cattle were shipped out of Idaho for processing. In south central Idaho, only a few small processors such as Ida-Beef in Burley, which opened in 2018 and specializes in cull dairy cows.

Agri Beef has operated feedlots in Idaho, and is no stranger to the cattle harvest side of the business. The company owns a mid-sized processing but the new plant will be a larger venture. Now the focus is on working with ranchers to produce high-quality beef products. Idaho ranchers who can sell their beef to niche markets might see bigger profits, with more hope of sustainability. Agri Beef will own 51% of the new plant, but ranchers who provide beef to the facility will own 49%.

“With an educated and motivated workforce, access to plentiful agricultural resources, and a vibrant community with a can-do spirit, Jerome and Idaho are everything we were looking for, Agri Beef Executive said.

Jerome County has about 80,000 beef cattle, and some producers want to expand their herds to be part of the new venture. “This facility will be a nice center for their business and they’ll have visitors from all over and this will be a big help to cattle producers in Idaho to have a dependable market and will create more jobs, Hall said.