Chobani Impacting Local Business


By Aimee Burnett

Twin Falls, Idaho ( KMVT-TV / KTWT-TV ) A local business is thriving in the wake of the Chobani yogurt factory opening.

"We fix equipment, we sell equipment, we try to be the one stop shop for construction, dairy and farming," said Gordy Gates, Western States Equipment Rental.

While the impact on the dairy industry is obvious, Western States equipment rental has seen a huge boost from Chobani’s arrival.

"It's increased our distribution. We've had a lot of equipment. Our service people have been busy because people with CAT equipment have been working over there," said Gates.

Their business took off about a year ago when construction on the state of the art plant began.

"A lot of people that didn't' have some specialty equipment of their own came in and rented stuff from us, so they could complete their project," said Gates.

Construction is one of the industries that has benefited.

"You could see anywhere from 200 to 400 vehicles on any given day. I mean it was a tremendous effort," said Jan Roeser, Regional Economist, Idaho Department of Labor.

In the months prior to its grand opening, Chobani hired roughly 350 new employees and are expected to hire another fifty in the next few months.

"It's made a tremendous effect on our economy. You have a ripple effect that always occurs whenever there's new jobs," said Roeser.

A ripple effect that's expected to continue for at least the next six to eight months.

"It's nice to have a neighbor right there that's expanding and building right next door," said Gates.

Breathing new life into an economy still battling the impacts of a recession.

Western States has hired a few new mechanics in the last year to keep up with all the additional business.

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