The first cotton spinning facility built in the US in many years has begun production in Louisiana as part of a $75m investment by Zagis USA, and a second yarn mill is already in the pipeline.
The $20m state-of-the-art 128,000-square-foot facility, which opened in Lacassine in December, employs 49 people and is capable of processing 50m pounds of cotton annually according to the company.
Along with its second facility – the location of which hasn’t yet been revealed – Zagis USA will employ at least 160 people by 2012.
Around 645 additional indirect jobs are also likely to be created by the mills.
Zagis USA, which is a venture between North Carolina textile executives and Mexican conglomerate Grupo Zaga, was set up in 2007.
According to Louisiana Economic Development (LED), when the new Zagis spinning mills are in full production they will utilise 15% to 20% of Louisiana’s cotton crop to spin yarn.
The new facility is one of the world’s most modern, open-ended spinning plants, and will have one of the lowest yarn production costs in the world due in part to its access to Louisiana’s cotton supply.
“This project represents a significant shift for the textile industry,” says LED secretary Stephen Moret, noting that companies have increasingly looked at offshore options during the past two decades.
“To have Zagis USA commit to building not one but two modern cotton spinning plants using the most advanced technology in the world is a testament to our state’s ongoing economic momentum.”