J.R. Simplot Co. says it will lay off 262 from Caldwell plant

Boise - The Idaho StatesmanNovember 22, 2013 

Simplot Company potato processing plant in Caldwell, ID. Photographed Nov. 2, 2005.

JOE JASZEWSKI

The J.R. Simplot Co. said it will lay off the employees at a potato processing plant when it closes on or soon after Dec. 31.

Simplot filed a notice of the layoffs this month with the Idaho Department of Labor. According to the notice, 208 hourly employees will be laid off when the plant closes on or within 13 days of New Year’s Eve. Toward the end of January, 11 salaried employees will be laid off. The remaining 33 hourly employees and 10 salaried employees will be let go by April.

The layoffs come as part of Simplot’s decision to close its potato plants in Caldwell, Nampa and Aberdeen and consolidate manufacturing in a new, 380,000-square-foot plant in Caldwell that will open in the spring of 2014.

The old Caldwell plant will be the first to close. The Nampa and Aberdeen plants will shut down sometime next year.

Nearly 800 people will be laid off from all the plants, with the new facility employing about 250. Former Simplot workers may reapply to work at the new plant but are not entitled to “bumping rights” over applicants with less experience at Simplot, according to the notice.

The layoffs were first reported by KTVB Channel 7.

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