CS Beef Packers began operations last week at the new harvest and processing facility in Kuna, Idaho. Partners J.R. Simplot Company and Caviness Beef Packers built the $100 million, 370,000-square-foot facility to harvest cull cows and bulls from dairy farms and ranches throughout the Intermountain West.

The new facility is expected to employ 700 workers when fully staffed. The plant also includes hide and rendering processing,and will process niche-fed beef programs. The plant's processing capacity is 1,700 head per day.

"This partnership is an opportunity to combine Caviness Beef's leadership in the meat packing industry with Simplot's long-standing status as a leader in agriculture," said Terry Caviness, CEO of Caviness Beef, in a news release. "Together we will help fill a void in the West by providing ranchers and dairy farmers with a state­ of-the-art beef processing plant."

"We haven't just created jobs here, we've built long-term careers with skills training and advancement opportunities that are going to boost the local economy," said Tom Basabe, president of Simplot Land and Livestock, in the news release.

The location provides local and regional producers a cost-effective processing solution by eliminating the need to transport cattle hundreds of miles to more distant packing plants. There are an estimated 600,000 dairy cows and more than 600,000 beef cows in the region.

Since January, CS Beef Packers said it has recruited and hired employees of all experience levels. While the team is still hiring, training for different units began in March and will continue as the facility ramps up processing.