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Scoular announces $20 million expansion in Jerome

By Sean Ellis

Idaho Farm Bureau Federation

JEROME – Scoular Co. announced April 12 it will invest $20 million to expand its existing feed blending facility in Jerome, which serves the state’s dairy and beef producers.

A company news release said the investment will help Scoular serve the growing and changing needs of dairy and beef producers.

Scoular is a $10 billion agribusiness company that buys, sells, stores, handles and processes grain and other feed and food ingredients. The company operates more than 100 offices and facilities in North America and Asia, including in Jerome and Twin Falls.

The company plans to break ground on the expansion project this month and expects it to be complete about spring 2024.

The existing facility in Jerome provides feed blends for dairy and beef customers. The expansion project will add two new key capabilities.

One includes a “steamflaking” process which processes corn into flakes and makes the feed more digestible for cattle. The corn is steamed, heated and then processed into a flake.

The other new capability is a pellet mill to make feed pellets. According to a company news release, pellets, which are typically used for feeding calves and beef cattle, are easy to transfer, handle and proportion for optimal nutrition.

Idaho ranks No. 3 in milk production in the United States and the bulk of the state’s dairy production occurs in the Magic Valley area of southcentral Idaho, which includes Jerome.

The region also includes a sizable portion of the state’s beef cattle industry.

Oakley rancher and Cassia County Farm Bureau President Paul Marchant said Scoular’s planned expansion of its Jerome facility is good news to livestock producers in the Magic Valley.

“The strength of Idaho’s dairy and cattle feeding industries lies in southcentral Idaho, so enhanced and expanded opportunities to gain access to more and higher quality feed can only strengthen livestock production in the area,” he said. “And it goes without saying that a thriving, vibrant livestock sector only improves the overall economic health and stability of the entire region and state.” 

Idaho Dairymen’s Association Executive Director Rick Naerebout said the announcement speaks to Scoular’s commitment to the region’s dairy and cattle industries and their allied partners.

“It’s no small investment,” he said of the project, adding that Scoular is a nationwide company that had lots of opportunities on where to locate the expansion. “It’s a good indication of their confidence in the dairy industry in Idaho.”

Scoular’s April 12 announcement is the latest in a series of recent investments that demonstrate the company’s confidence in Idaho’s agriculture industry.

The company in December 2021 celebrated the opening of a facility in Jerome that produces a new barley product called Emerge that is sold to the aquaculture and pet food industries.

A high-energy liquid feed supplement for cattle feeders is also produced during the manufacturing process.

Idaho leads the nation in barley production.

In August 2021, Scoular announced a new program called Barley MVP that seeks to promote food and feed barley varieties as economically viable rotation crops for Idaho farmers.

Most of Idaho’s roughly 550,000 barley acres are malt varieties produced for the beer brewing industry.

The Barley MVP program will focus on helping Idaho growers expand the production of barley varieties that are produced for the animal feed or human food markets. 

“Agriculture drives the Magic Valley’s economy, and Scoular has made it a priority to support the industry through innovation, state-of-the-art facilities and programs that support local producers,” Andy Hohwieler, a Scoular regional manager based in Twin Falls, said in the company’s recent news release. “With our latest investment, we look forward to creating new feed products that create solutions for end-users.”