Reduction in capacity at the Simplot potato-processing plant in Heyburn, ID, has resulted in the closure of the ethanol operation associated with the plant.
Built in 1984, the plant used by-products from the plant as a feedstock for production of fuel-grade ethanol.
Feedstock has been reduced to a level that it is no longer feasible to produce ethanol, Paul Mann, plant manager, said. He added the company has had interested parties looking at the plant but nothing definite has been forthcoming.
The Heyburn plant is scheduled to be closed permanently in 2004 because the 43-year-old facility is no longer cost-effective, according to Simplot officials.
During almost 20 years of operation, the Heyburn ethanol plant produced more than 25 million gallons. About 300,000 tons of high-protein cattle feed, a by-product of ethanol production, also has been turned out.
Simplot also operates an ethanol plant in conjunction with its potato-processing plant in Caldwell, ID.