CROWLEY, La. – Supreme Rice, one of the largest rice-milling operations in Louisiana, is investing $16.2 million to develop parboil facilities in Crowley and Mermentau for a new line of ready-to-eat products. The expansion will create 20 direct new jobs, and LED estimates the project will result in 79 indirect jobs, for a total of nearly 100 new jobs in Acadia Parish. The company will retain 181 jobs at its current locations.
In Mermentau, the company will build a new greenfield facility for the parboil operations, which will partially cook the rice for the new product line. In Crowley, it will develop a new parboil mill inside its existing facility.
“As a processor of one of Louisiana’s key crops, Supreme Rice is both a cultural ambassador and an agribusiness leader for our state,” Gov. John Bel Edwards said. “This expansion and the new jobs it will generate in Acadiana will help to sustain the growing momentum of our rural revitalization efforts.”
Supreme Rice plans to begin construction on the new facilities by the fourth quarter of this year.
“Our new parboil facility in Mermentau will allow us to market this product line to customers,” CEO Bobby Hanks of Supreme Rice said. “The new parboil rice products will create another value-added milled rice offering that further supports the stability of Louisiana-grown rice.”
Established in Kaplan, Louisiana, in 1936, Supreme Rice moved to Crowley the following year and has been headquartered there since. Founder Joseph Doré built and implemented one of the first drying units in the industry, allowing the company to expand its reach globally. Processing more than 1 billion pounds annually, Supreme Rice produces packages of white long grain, medium long grain, jasmine and brown long grain rice that are shipped to more than 50 countries.
“Supreme Rice Mill is a very important economic engine for Crowley, Acadia Parish, and the State of Louisiana,” Crowley Mayor Tim Monceaux said. “We are pleased and excited to have this expansion realized and look forward to the continued success and growth of this business. Under Bobby Hanks’ leadership, the rice mill has grown substantially, and we wish him the very best in his endeavors.”
"It is with hopeful and great anticipation that the new endeavor with Supreme Rice in Mermentau will bring the economic boost that is much needed to our village and community," Mermentau Mayor Darla Istre said.
To secure the project in Acadia Parish, the state of Louisiana provided Supreme Rice with a competitive incentive package that includes $750,000 from the state’s Economic Development Award Program. The company is also expected to utilize the state’s Quality Jobs and Enterprise Zone programs.
“As one of Louisiana’s largest rice-milling operations, Supreme Rice is a cornerstone of our state’s agricultural economy,” said One Acadiana President & CEO Troy Wayman. “One Acadiana is proud to have worked with our partners at LED and the Acadia Parish Chamber to see this major expansion come to fruition. We congratulate Supreme Rice and our partners in Acadia Parish on this expansion and applaud the company’s 85 years of impact, investment, and leadership.”
“We are proud to celebrate Supreme Rice's parboil expansion at their Crowley and Mermentau sites,” Acadia Parish Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Meghan Duhon said. “Acadia Parish's agricultural roots run deep, and this expansion is a testament to the parish's commitment to the industry and farming community. Supreme Rice's new investment and creation of jobs builds upon their continued dedication to our local workforce and economy. We are thankful Supreme Rice calls Acadia Parish home.”
About Supreme Rice
Located in the heart of Southwest Louisiana’s rice region, Supreme Rice LLC is the premier exporter of U.S. milled rice on the Gulf Coast, with convenient access to the ports of Lake Charles, Houston and New Orleans. Southwest Louisiana boasts nearly 500,000 acres of prime rice-producing land and many of the best rice farmers in the U.S. Louisiana’s rice farmers also combine the best rice-farming practices with conservation and stewardship. For more information, visit SupremeRice.com.