Louisianians are warm and friendly, relaxed and fun-loving, but they are also highly effective and loyal. A right to work state for more than three decades, there are currently over 110,000 people employed in Louisiana in manufacturing-related positions. And these employees are producing excellent value for their employers. According to the US Census Bureau’s Annual Survey of Manufactures data released in November 2012, Louisiana ranks #2 in the nation in value added per dollar of wages and per hour worked.
- Compared to the U.S., Louisiana produces 114 percent more value added for each hour worked
- Compared to the U.S., Louisiana produces 77 percent more value for each $1 of wages
Workforce Recruitment and Training
Community and technical college programs coupled with research university curriculum provide the strong skills background and expertise that make Louisiana’s workforce so productive. Add to the mix LED FastStart, the nation’s best workforce recruitment and training program, and agribusiness operations in Louisiana have a strong competitive advantage. FastStart works with new and expanding Louisiana-based operations to ensure that they have a highly-qualified, trained workforce from day one. All at no cost to the company. FastStart has designed and delivered customized workforce solutions for a wide variety of Fortune 500 companies across multiple industry sectors. In particular, the team has managed hundreds of workforce programs in multiple states including for leading companies like Roy O. Martin, American Woodmark Corp., Anthony Forest Products, Fruit of the Loom, ConAgra Foods Lamb Weston, Mission Foods, Keebler Company and many more.
In addition to LED FastStart, Louisiana is making strategic investments in higher education to meet the state’s future workforce needs. Because of the state’s rich agricultural history, Louisiana’s universities have strong connections to agribusiness sectors. Twenty university-run research stations located throughout the state offer businesses groundbreaking research and economic resources.
Specialty food products ventures can also benefit from technical support and the latest research from experts in LSU’s Food Science Department and School of Renewable Natural Resources. In South Louisiana, Nicholls State University has recently partnered with Chef John Folse to create a Culinology program — merging food science with culinary arts.
ConAgra Foods Lamb Weston
Recently, ConAgra Foods Lamb Weston formed a research partnership with the LSU AgCenter Sweet Potato Research Station — the only facility of its kind devoted to sweet potato development — in conjunction with their new sweet potato processing facility in Northeast Louisiana. Their goal is to develop a more disease-resistant variety of sweet potato that is less prone to bruising during harvesting and processing. Close proximity and easy access to the center's scientists were primary reasons ConAgra Lamb Weston selected Delhi, where the sweet potato processing facility opened in fall 2010.
“FastStart’s capabilities should clinch decision making for firms looking for a place to expand or create new operations. It can make that decision-making process much easier for employers if they understand the value that this program can provide to them.”
- Dan Downard, Director of Human Resources, ConAgra Foods Lamb Weston