barley (copy)

A barley field in East Idaho is shown in this file photo.

JEROME — A new 15,000-square-foot barley processing facility is coming to the Magic Valley.

Scoular, an Omaha, Nebraska-based company that stores, transports, sells and processes grains, will build the plant next to its existing Jerome livestock feed-ingredients facility, just a couple of miles northeast of the city’s downtown. Scoular has more than 1,000 employees and offices on three continents.

The new Jerome facility will make a high-protein barley concentrate for aquaculture feed and pet food and will coproduce a liquid feed supplement for cattle. Scoular says the plant will be up and running in May and will process 1.9 million bushels of barley per year. Capacity will likely expand in the next few years. The facility will employ 13 people.

“We’re very excited that The Scoular Company chose Jerome as the site for this new investment,” Jerome Mayor Dave Davis said in a Scoular press release. “The city is grateful that Scoular continues to demonstrate its long-term commitment to our community.”

In the press release, Scoular said south-central Idaho is an ideal location for a barley processing facility because the region is full of grain producers and purchasers. Idaho is typically one of America’s biggest barley producing states.

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Idaho ranked third in the country last year in barley acres planted with 540,000. Only Montana, with 920,000 acres, and North Dakota with 580,000 acres, planted more barley in 2019.