Oil, seed looks to expand

Published 6:00 am Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Ferriday Oil and Seed is looking to expand its business and employ more people.

Tuesday evening, at Ferriday’s Board of Alderman meeting, Ferriday Oil and Seed Plant Manager Gary Thorton went before the board to ask if the town would allow the company to lease the old Kelly’s Kids building in the town’s industrial park.

Thorton said the company plans to expand their business by opening a bagging company to process and bag soybean meal to sell as deer feed.

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Thorton said the company plans to sell the soybean meal to Wild Game Innovations, a deer feed and attractant producing company, to sell in outlet stores such as Cabela’s, BassPro Shop, Academy Sports and Outdoors and Wal-Mart.

“I think this is exactly what we need to do to keep economic development going forward,” said Concordia Parish Economic Development Director Teresa Dennis. “I would encourage the town council to release the Kelly’s Kids building at a reasonable cost.”

If the town would allow the company to use the building, Thorton said the company plans to hire six to eight new employees at the bagging facility.

During a public discussion on the expansion of the oil and seed company, Liz Brookings asked Thorton if the company would use prison labor or hire private citizens to work at the bagging facility.

Thorton said the company had not explored that issue yet.

Thorton said he would like the board lease the building to Ferriday Oil and Seed by February.

The company plans to start production in March.

In other business:

4A public meeting was held to discuss the Certified Local Government Ordinance and Historic Commission Boundary.

4The board voted to adopt new boundaries, which would extend from E.E. Wallace Boulevard to First Street and Mickey Gilley Avenue to Florida Street.

4City Attorney Derrick Carson said two checks, won by Ferriday in a class action lawsuit concerning the town’s water treatment plant, would be received next week.

Carson said an amount of $137,000 from U.S. Filter would be directly deposited into the city attorney’s trust fund and attorney Chuck Norris would deliver a check of $167,000 from the class action suit account to Allen and Carson next Tuesday.

4The board voted to hire William McKeel as the new wastewater treatment supervisor and operator for $1,100 a month.

4Allen said he would present names of applicants for Ferriday’s new grant writer position before the board at next month’s meeting.

4Allen said the town would write and seek approval of a grant to repair the town’s swimming pool.

Allen said he would like to see the pool reopened in the summer.

“Every summer we’ve had a swimming pool except these last two years,” Allen said. “We need to come up with some program to make sure the pool gets opened by this summer.”