With an approximately $30 billion generated each year, agribusiness is a well-established Louisiana industry that benefits from abundant local commodities and raw materials and numerous competitive advantages. Agriculture contributes a significant economic impact to North Louisiana, injecting an estimated $1 billion into the regional economy according to the LSU AgCenter. Of Louisiana’s total agriculture output, farmers in northeast Louisiana produced about 80 percent of the state’s cotton and corn, 60 percent of the soybeans, 36 percent of the grain sorghum, 20 percent of the rice, and 13 percent of the cattle.
Agribusinesses will find numerous benefits for locating or expanding in North Louisiana. The following competitive advantages nurture a thriving and expanding agribusiness sector in our region.
Some of the region's most notable project wins were in agribusiness. These agribusiness companies recognize North Louisiana's competitive advantages provide a sustainable business solution to help them succeed nationally and globally. Kennedy Rice Mills will locate in Mer Rouge, La, reducing freight costs for area rice growers who had to transport their rough rice to mills miles away from Morehouse Parish. The new mill is expected to process 30 percent to 40 percent of the Northeast Louisiana rice crop, with approximately 95 percent exported to out-of-state destinations. The project will create 22 new direct jobs and include a capital investment of $10 million. DG Foods, a Hazelhurst, Mississippi-based company, established a new 88,0000 SF poultry and meat processing facility in Bastrop, La. This project represents a capital investment of $9.7 million and is projected to create more than 300 new jobs. The company took over part of the closed International Paper facility, once the area's largest employer. Foster Farms , a California based company (pictured above), was recruited by state and local leaders in 2009 to reopen a closed Pilgrim's Pride chicken processing plant in Farmerville, Louisiana. Foster Farms projects the plant will employ at least 1,100 plant employees with a corresponding payroll of over $24 million. The project saved more than a thousand jobs and prevented the loss of over $100 million in state and local tax revenue over the next ten years. The Foster Farms project was recognized as one of the top 15 projects in the country for community impact by Trade & Industry Development magazine