POSTED: Monday, September 26, 2011 - 10:38am
UPDATED: Monday, September 26, 2011 - 4:51pm
BATON ROUGE, LA (NBC33) — A new shrimp processing facility, Baton Rouge Shrimp Company Inc., will open in Baton Rouge and create 38 new jobs. Governor Jindal, along with Mayor Kip Holden and seafood entrepreneur Tommy Lusco, made the announcement this morning.
“The opening of Baton Rouge Shrimp will be a valuable addition to our area,” said Mayor-President Kip Holden of East Baton Rouge Parish. “We are thrilled that this operation has chosen to call Baton Rouge home. We look forward to working with them further as they become successful.”
Along with creating new jobs, the facility will invest $2.2 million for equipment and renovations to a 50,000-square-foot warehouse located on Neosho Avenue.
Lusco is a seafood veteran who grew his company, the Louisiana Seafood Exchange, to $16 million in sales within the first 12 years of operation. He then sold the business in 2001 and retired. He then purchased Baton Rouge Shrimp Company and plans to buy product from Louisiana shrimpers along the Gulf Coast.
“It just seemed like an opportune time, because the state is starting to promote regulations like certification and origin traceability,” Lusco said in an official press release. “Most of the foreign shrimp are farm-raised and they’re not a premium crop like we produce in the Gulf. We have one of the remaining sustainable fisheries in the country (producing more than $1 billion in shrimp per year) and that’s a big deal. Louisiana is the place to be if you’re in the seafood business.”
The state is providing a $1.09 million loan to Baton Rouge Shrimp Company, and the company is expected to utilize the state’s Enterprise Zone and Industrial Tax Exemption programs.