Amalgamated Sugar

Amalgamated Sugar Co.’s factory in Twin Falls is seen in this early Clarence E. Bisbee photo.

1897: David Eccles founds Ogden Sugar Co. and builds a sugar factory in Ogden, Utah.

1902: Eccles founds Logan Sugar Co. and builds a factory in Logan, Utah. Eccles consolidates the two, creating Amalgamated Sugar Co. Days later, Eccles sells Oregon Sugar Co. to Amalgamated.

In its first year, Amalgamated processes 97,119 tons of sugar beets into 10,626 tons of sugar.

1903: Amalgamated and Eccles each buy 25 percent of Lewiston Sugar Co., with 50 percent owner American Beet Sugar Co. Then, American buys 50 percent of Amalgamated.

1905: Sugar beet blight devastates the Ogden and Logan plants.

1912: Amalgamated opens a plant in Burley.

1914: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints purchases a large portion of Amalgamated, which it sells in 1929.

1916: Amalgamated purchases a sugar plant in Brigham, Utah.

1917: Industry disputes drive Amalgamated to build a plant at what would become Amalga, Utah. The company’s Paul plant opens the same year. And Amalgamated purchases the California-based Pacific Sugar Corp.

1926: The Paul plant is shuttered.

1932: Amalgamated separates from American. A new production record is set: 603,615 tons of beets produce 97,928 tons of sugar, nearly 2 million 100-pound bags.

1934: Only the Lewiston and Missoula, Mont., plants operate due to blight. Also, Amalgamated obtains the White Satin trademark for marketing.

1935: A blight-resistant seed variety is used for the first time. Yields are drastically higher than previous years, and five of eight factories operate.

1936: The Paul factory reopens. Also, Amalgamated sells the Missoula and Clarksburg, Calif., factories to American Crystal Sugar Co. (successor of the American Beet Sugar Co.), leaving Amalgamated’s six remaining factories in Utah and Idaho. Amalgamated also recapitalizes, leading to a complete separation from American Crystal.

1950: Amalgamated is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

1960: The company purchases Franklin County Sugar Co.

1971: Amalgamated and its competitors are sued, alleging price fixing and market manipulation.

1984: The company purchases Medford Corp. (known as Medco), a timber company based in Medford, Ore., for $110 million.

1987: Amalgamated merges into LLC Corp then changes its name to Valhi Inc.

1990: Union workers go on strike.

1994: Snake River Sugar Co., a grower-owned co-op, forms.

1997: Snake River Sugar buys Amalgamated Sugar from Valhi for $250 million. The co-op borrows $180 million, including $100 million from Valhi, to complete the transaction.

2005: Amalgamated closes the Nyssa, Ore., plant, leaving the company with three factories.

2009: The Nampa factory processes about 1.5 million short tons of sugar beets; Paul processes 2.6 million short tons; and Twin Falls processes 1.1 million.

Sources: Amalgamated Sugar Co., Snake River Sugar Co., Wikipedia

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