Don Simplot: The Man Behind the Success of One of the World’s Largest Agribusinesses

The name Simplot is synonymous with one of the largest agribusinesses in the world. The late J.R Simplot was the founder of this empire, but it was his son, Donald Simplot, who played an integral role in helping to build the business into what it is today. As one of the wealthiest families in the United States, the Simplots have played a significant role in the agriculture industry for decades.

In this article, we will delve into the life of Donald Simplot, his involvement with the Simplot company, and the impact he has had on the agricultural industry. Furthermore, we will explore the benefits of working for the Simplot company and answer some commonly asked questions about the Simplot family, including “Who is Simplot owned by?” , “What was J.R Simplot’s net worth?”, “How rich is the Simplot family?”, and “How many kids did J.R Simplot have?”

So, whether you’re an aspiring entrepreneur, a budding agriculture enthusiast, or simply someone who is interested in the history and workings of successful family-owned businesses, this article is for you. Let’s dive in and learn more about the life and legacy of Don Simplot.

Don Simplot – The Man Behind One of the World’s Leading Food Companies

Don Simplot is a name that is synonymous with the food industry. Over the years, he has made significant contributions to the industry that have had a lasting impact on the way we eat, think, and live. Here is a closer look at the life and work of this remarkable innovator.

Early Life and Education

  • Don Simplot was born in 1934 in Boise, Idaho.
  • His father, J.R. Simplot, was a successful entrepreneur who had made a fortune in the potato business.
  • Don attended Stanford University, where he studied business administration and economics.

don simplot

The Simplot Company

  • Don Simplot joined his father’s company, the J.R. Simplot Company, in 1956.
  • Over the years, he played a key role in expanding the company’s operations and diversifying its product offerings.
  • In 1974, Don took over as CEO of the Simplot Company, a position he held until 2008.
  • Under his leadership, the company grew into one of the largest food companies in the world, with operations in 20 countries and over 10,000 employees.

Innovations and Contributions

  • Don Simplot was known for his innovative ideas and his willingness to take risks.
  • He was instrumental in developing frozen french fries, which revolutionized the fast-food industry and made potato products more accessible to consumers.
  • Don also helped to pioneer the use of fertilizer made from waste byproducts, which became a billion-dollar industry.
  • He was a firm believer in sustainable agriculture and was a vocal advocate for environmentally responsible practices in the food industry.

Philanthropy and Legacy

  • Don Simplot was committed to giving back to his community and supporting charitable causes.
  • He established the Don and June Simplot Foundation, which supports education, health, and community programs in Idaho and throughout the United States.
  • Don passed away in 2008, leaving behind a legacy as one of the most influential figures in the food industry.
  • Today, the Simplot Company continues to be a leader in the food industry, with a commitment to innovation, sustainability, and community engagement.

Key Takeaways

  • Don Simplot was a pioneering figure in the food industry who helped to develop innovative products and promote sustainable agriculture.
  • He played a key role in the growth and success of the Simplot Company, which is now one of the largest food companies in the world.
  • Don was also committed to philanthropy and supporting charitable causes, leaving behind a legacy of community engagement and giving back.

The Life and Legacy of Donald Simplot

Donald Simplot was a prominent businessman and entrepreneur who helped revolutionize the food processing industry. Here are some key takeaways about the life and legacy of Don Simplot:

Early Life and Career

  • Donald Simplot was born in 1909 in Dubuque, Iowa, and spent much of his childhood working on his family’s farm.
  • In the 1930s, he moved to Idaho and eventually started a potato farming and processing operation with his brothers.
  • During World War II, Simplot’s company became a major supplier of dehydrated potatoes to the military, which helped establish him as a major player in the food industry.

Innovations in Food Processing

  • Simplot was known for his innovative approach to food processing, which helped him develop new techniques for freezing and preserving food.
  • He was also one of the first to use frozen french fries in restaurants, which helped make them a staple of American cuisine.

Philanthropy and Public Service

  • In addition to his business career, Simplot was also known for his philanthropic work and public service.
  • He was involved in a number of charitable organizations and donated millions of dollars to support education, health care, and other causes.
  • Simplot also served in a number of government positions, including stints as a state legislator and on various advisory boards.

Legacy and Impact

  • Donald Simplot’s legacy continues to be felt today, both in the food industry and in the communities he supported.
  • His innovations in food processing helped shape the modern food landscape and made certain foods more accessible to consumers.
  • Simplot’s philanthropy also helped support many important causes and institutions, making a lasting impact on the world around him.

Benefits of Simplot

If you’re someone who’s not familiar with Don Simplot or Simplot company, then you should know that the Simplot company is an agriculture company that specializes in frozen foods, fertilizer, and crop protection. Apart from this, there are other notable benefits of Simplot as well, which we’ve listed below:

Fresh Food

One of the main benefits of Simplot is that it offers fresh food. They have been in the frozen food business for over 70 years, and they know how to keep products fresh. Additionally, Simplot guarantees high-quality and delicious taste in all of their products.

Nutritious Products

Simplot products are made up of fresh and high-quality ingredients. The company believes in providing their customers with nutritious food, and they follow all the latest nutritional research to ensure that their products are up-to-date.

Easy to Cook

Simplot products are easy to prepare. They are designed to save you time and effort in the kitchen, making meal planning quick and fun. Additionally, they offer a variety of recipes on their website that you can try to make cooking even easier.


Simplot products are affordable and provide quality food, which makes it a win-win situation. You can enjoy good food without having to pay too much money.

Sustainable Practices

Simplot believes in making agriculture sustainable for future generations. For this, they have implemented various sustainable practices such as using less water and fertilizers, recycling materials, and reducing food waste. They take their responsibility to protect the environment seriously.


Simplot is always looking for ways to innovate and improve their products. They have a research and development team that is continually working on ways to enhance their products and come up with new ones.

With these benefits, it’s evident that Simplot is a great choice for people who want nutritious, easy-to-cook, affordable, and fresh food. Additionally, they are a responsible company that takes sustainability and innovation seriously.

Who Owns Simplot

Simplot is a privately owned company, and ownership of the company is entirely within the Simplot family. Here are some key facts about the current ownership of the Simplot company:

The Current Simplot Family Owners

  • The J.R. Simplot Company was founded by Jack Simplot in 1929, and it is currently owned and managed by members of the Simplot family.

  • The Simplot family is known for their business acumen and entrepreneurial spirit. Today, the company is run by CEO Scott Simplot and Chairman Gay Simplot.

  • The Simplot family has a net worth estimated to be in excess of $8.3 billion. However, the family is notoriously private, and little is known about the specifics of their wealth or business dealings.

The Company’s Origins

  • The Simplot company has a rich history that dates back to the early 20th century. Jack Simplot began as a potato farmer in Idaho, and he eventually developed innovative ways to process potatoes into a variety of food products.

  • The company grew rapidly, and today it is one of the largest privately held food and agribusiness companies in the world. The company has a diverse range of products and services, from fertilizer and seeds to frozen foods and animal feed.

  • The Simplot company has a reputation for quality and innovation, and it is known for its commitment to sustainability, social responsibility, and community engagement.

The Future of Simplot

  • The Simplot company is poised for continued growth and success in the years ahead. The company has a strong leadership team, a solid financial foundation, and a commitment to innovation and sustainability.

  • As the company continues to expand, it will remain a family-owned and operated business, with the Simplot family at the helm.

  • Whether you are a customer, an employee, or simply a fan of the brand, you can be confident that the Simplot company will continue to be a leader in the food and agribusiness industry for many years to come.

What Was JR Simplot’s Net Worth

JR Simplot was a successful businessman and entrepreneur who made a name for himself in the potato industry. He started with humble beginnings but worked hard to build a company that would become a household name. As a result of his hard work and dedication, he earned a significant net worth over the years.

Here are some key facts and information about JR Simplot’s net worth:

Career Overview

  • JR Simplot was born in Idaho in 1909 and started working at a young age.
  • He began his career by running his family’s farm and selling his potatoes to local businesses.
  • Simplot continued to expand his business and eventually became a major player in the potato industry.
  • He founded the JR Simplot Company in 1929, which became one of the largest privately held companies in the United States.

Net Worth

  • JR Simplot had a net worth of over $3 billion at the time of his death in 2008.
  • He made his fortune through his various business ventures in the potato industry.
  • In addition to his potato business, Simplot also invested in phosphate mining, cattle ranching, and real estate.
  • He was known for his frugal lifestyle, which helped him amass a fortune over the years.


  • Despite his wealth, JR Simplot was known for his philanthropy and charitable giving.
  • He donated millions of dollars to various charitable causes, including education, healthcare, and the arts.
  • The company he founded, the JR Simplot Company, also supports various community initiatives and charitable organizations.


  • JR Simplot’s legacy lives on through his company, which is still thriving today.
  • His contributions to the potato industry, as well as his philanthropic efforts, have made a lasting impact.
  • He is remembered as a shrewd businessman, a philanthropist, and a true American success story.

In conclusion, JR Simplot’s net worth was a product of his hard work, dedication, and success in the potato industry. Despite his wealth, he remained committed to giving back to his community through philanthropy and charitable giving. His contributions to the industry and his legacy continue to inspire entrepreneurs and businesspeople today.

How Rich is the Simplot Family

J.R. Simplot, the late founder of the Simplot Company, was once the richest man in Idaho, with a net worth of over $3.6 billion according to Forbes. But what about the Simplot family as a whole? Let’s take a closer look at their wealth.

The Simplot Family Fortune

  • The Simplot family is one of the wealthiest families in the United States, with an estimated net worth of $8.3 billion as of 2021 according to Forbes.
  • The family’s wealth is primarily derived from the Simplot Company, a privately held food and agriculture business founded by J.R. Simplot in 1929.
  • The company’s products include frozen french fries, fertilizers, herbicides, and animal feed, among others, and is one of the largest potato producers in the world.
  • J.R. Simplot’s children and grandchildren inherited the majority of the company after his death in 2008, making them each billionaires in their own right.
  • The Simplot family is known for their philanthropic efforts, including donations to education and healthcare in the Boise, Idaho, area.

How They Spend Their Wealth

  • The Simplot family is notoriously private and doesn’t often disclose how they spend their wealth.
  • However, they are known for their luxurious lifestyle and investments in high-end real estate, including a 4,500-acre ranch in McCall, Idaho.
  • The family has also donated millions of dollars to various charities and causes over the years, including a $5 million donation to the Boise State University foundation in 2018.
  • Some of the Simplot family members are involved in equestrian sports and have donated to equine charities as well.

Key Takeaways

  • The Simplot family is one of the wealthiest families in the United States, with an estimated net worth of $8.3 billion.
  • don simplot

  • The family’s wealth is primarily derived from the Simplot Company, a privately held food and agriculture business founded by J.R. Simplot.
  • The Simplot family is known for their philanthropic efforts, including donations to education and healthcare in the Boise, Idaho, area.

How Many Children Did J.R. Simplot Have

J.R. Simplot, the famous businessman and entrepreneur, was not only known for his successful career but also for his large family. Let’s take a closer look at how many kids he had and some interesting facts about them.

J.R. Simplot’s Children

  • The Simplot family had eight children in total – three sons and five daughters.

  • The three sons were named Scott, Gay, and Don, and their five daughters were named Esther, Judy, Karen, Linda, and Barbara.

  • While they were growing up, J.R. Simplot made sure his children understood the importance of hard work and gave them jobs within his companies.

  • The children went on to lead successful careers of their own, with some of them working for Simplot companies and others pursuing different paths.

Interesting Facts About J.R. Simplot’s Children

  • Don Simplot, one of J.R. Simplot’s sons, went on to become the president of several Simplot companies, including J.R. Simplot Company and Simplot International.

  • Gay Simplot, another one of J.R. Simplot’s sons, was a skiing champion and was even a member of the U.S. Ski Team.

  • Karen Simplot, one of J.R. Simplot’s daughters, was a talented artist and sculptor and had her work featured in museums and galleries across the United States.

  • don simplot

  • Esther Simplot, another one of J.R. Simplot’s daughters, was honored for her philanthropic work by having a Boise Symphony orchestra hall named after her.

Although J.R. Simplot is no longer with us, his legacy lives on through his children and the many companies he founded. It’s clear that his dedication to hard work and determination has been passed down to his children, who have all gone on to lead successful lives.

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