Two new beef packers in Idaho are allowing dairy producers to market their cull cows locally.
Ida-Beef began harvesting more than 100 cows per day upon opening in January of this year. The Burley, Idaho plant is designed to process 350 to 400 head per day, according to the Associated Press.
Last year, CS Beef Packers opened a larger plant also focused on cull cow and bull slaughter in Kuna, Idaho. CS Beef Packers has a processing capacity of 1,700 head per day, accepting both beef and dairy cull animals.
Prior to the plants opening dairy producers had to ship cattle out of state to be processed because there were no larger packing plants in Idaho.
“We’re pleased to see the investment and the infrastructure that supports the beef end of what we do,” says Rick Naerebout, CEO of the Idaho Dairymen’s Association.
Dairies and beef producers should both benefit from the new plants in Idaho as it will reduce the cost of freight and limit stress on animals having to be hauled with the shorter drive time.
There are an estimated 600,000 dairy cows and more than 600,000 beef cows in the region.