J.R. Simplot Smoky Canyon Mine, A Committed Company

By Richelle Primm, SVI Media

“Our employees are our greatest asset,” Justin Kaiser, Human Resources Manager of Simplot’s Smoky Canyon Mine said.

Smoky Canyon Mine currently provides 230 jobs and the large majority of those employees come from Star Valley, Kaiser said. “My favorite part about my job is getting to know all the employees and interacting with all the different departments. I love being able to play a small part in helping employees be successful in their roles and develop in their careers with Simplot.”

According to Simplot’s website, Simplot is one of the largest privately held food and agribusiness companies in the nation. It’s devoted to “Bringing Earth’s Resources to Life.”

“Much of bringing earth’s resources to life starts right here at the mine,” Kaiser said. “We mine phosphate rock, which is then sent to Simplot’s Don Plant in Pocatello, ID via a slurry mix through a pipeline, where it is processed into fertilizer. That fertilizer is then distributed to farmers across the nation to help in growing crops.”

In addition to providing basic resources, Simplot supports different community events, school functions and the SV Chamber of Commerce, Kaiser said. “We give support through sponsoring events and various organizations or by providing other resources in some cases like equipment or training.”

Kaiser said Simplot benefits from being a SV Chamber of Commerce member because the Chamber attracts people to the valley, and that in turn helps Simplot in their endeavors to attract and retain great talent.

“Getting people to live, work, and stay here is huge for us…like I said, our employees are our greatest asset,” Kaiser said.

Kaiser also serves on the SV Chamber Board of Directors. He encourages businesses to take part in the chamber.

“In order for Star Valley to grow and sustain the culture we want and that we love, we need more support from local businesses to help the chamber grow and meet its’ initiatives fulfill its mission,” Kaiser said.