XL Four Star Beef Inc. said Friday that it will close its Nampa, Idaho, beef processing plant at the beginning of June. The plant employs more than 500 people, reports the Idaho Statesman. The plant is also closing its operating in Calgary, laying off more than 500 workers there as well.

“We regret that we have had to take such extreme action, but the economics of operating the facility combined with the capital requirements of a plant of this age make it unfeasible to operate,” said Brian Nilsson, co-CEO of XL.

XL is pointing to a decrease in the western Canadian cow herd that has greatly affected the mature cattle supply, reports the Calgary Herald. That decline, coupled with “challenging competitive conditions in the Canadian marketplace,” have made it no longer viable for the two plants to operate, said the company in a statement.

XL Four Star Beef Inc. buyers will continue to purchase mature cattle for its Omaha, Neb., plant, he said in a news release.

Swift & Co. operated the Nampa plant until closing it in August 2005. XL Foods bought the plant and an Omaha, Neb., plant from Swift in April 2006 and reopened the Nampa plant in February 2007.

XL Foods is part of the Nilsson Brothers Group, a Canadian cattle feeding and marketing company with operations in Alberta and Saskatchewan.

Source: Idaho Statesman, Calgary Herald