McCain Foods' Idaho expansion paused

Times-News (Twin Falls)May 30, 2014 

A $100 million expansion of McCain Foods USA in Burley — a project expected to create 100 jobs — now is on hold as the company re-evaluates market conditions, Burley officials say.

“It’s definitely not canceled,” said City Administrator Mark Mitton.

Mitton said McCain Foods is continuing improvements to its existing production lines and one of its two plants. Those improvements cost about $40 million, said Doug Manning, head of economic development in Burley.

But the major renovation and expansion of the second plant now is stalled. The only work done in that area so far has been planning, Manning said.

The company employs about 600 people at the two Magic Valley plants. Some of the new jobs were to have commanded higher salaries because of the technology involved, Manning told the Times-News.

He predicted the expansion will commence six months from now.

McCain announced the expansion last fall but had set no construction timeline, Mitton said.

Earlier reports had said one of the two plants would be expanded within two years, with improvements to the building and addition of updated equipment. The plant, Plant 2, processes conventional and battered french fries, which are distributed throughout the U.S. and exported to Asia.

ccrane@magicvalley.com

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