Gov. Phil Bryant and officials from Moon River Foods announced today the company is locating a new fish processing operation in Baird, Miss., in Sunflower County. The project represents a corporate investment of $3 million and will create 100 new jobs.
Working with contract fishermen licensed by the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks, Moon River Foods will commercially harvest an invasive species of Asian carp from the Mississippi River and its tributaries. The carp will be processed at the Baird facility.
"I am proud to welcome Moon River Foods to our state and am particularly grateful for the numerous job opportunities in agribusiness this company is creating in the Mississippi Delta. These jobs will have a lasting, positive affect on the local community in Sunflower County and throughout the Delta region," Gov. Phil Bryant said. "I look forward to partnering with the company in the future and wish the Moon River team many years of success in Mississippi."
"We want to thank all of the people who helped and assisted in making this Moon River Foods project possible. We have a very good beginning and in the next three months, Moon River Foods is going to develop a production line. Moon River plans to be in production by the fourth quarter of 2014," said Moon River Foods Chairman Xiaohan Zhu. "We will try our best to make the project a success and provide job opportunities and economic development in the Mississippi Delta."
The Mississippi Development Authority provided assistance in support of the project for workforce training and ad valorem tax exemptions. Sunflower County provided assistance for the project, as well.
Partnering with MDA on this project were the Sunflower County Economic Development District, Delta Council, Delta Wildlife, the Catfish Institute, USDA Warmwater Aquaculture Research Unit, Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks, and the Mississippi Department of Agriculture and Commerce.
"Successful economic development requires the collaborative efforts of entities at all levels of government, and this project is a testament to that fact," said MDA Executive Director Brent Christensen. "We thank all of our partners that worked to bring Moon River Foods and these new jobs to Mississippi."