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Construction begins on nation’s largest research dairy

Excavation crews have started laying the groundwork on local farmland for the University of Idaho-led Idaho Center for Agriculture, Food and the Environment (Idaho CAFE), which will include the nation’s largest research dairy.

Earthmoving began on May 4. Once the site is prepared, construction workers will begin pouring cement for the milking parlor. The first cows may arrive at Idaho CAFE before the end of 2024, with milking starting in early 2025.

U of I and its partners had hoped to start work last summer but have reaped rewards from their choice to delay building Idaho CAFE, allowing time for exorbitant construction costs to fall. The price of building the project’s initial phase, which will include a 2,000-cow dairy adjacent to a 640-acre research farm, dropped by roughly $4 million during the hiatus following a ceremonial groundbreaking for the project on June 30, 2022.

May 15, 2023



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