Feb 19, 2010 9:15 AM by Associated Press
NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Louisiana sugar cane growers and the sugar processing industry are uniting to get the product from the fields to the consumer in a direct line.
Cane growers hope the deal will boost their $2 billion annual industry, which has struggled with flat prices over two decades and major crop-disrupting storms for the past 10 years.
Construction is under way on a $190 million sugar refinery just northwest of New Orleans that will be able to produce 1 million tons of sugar annually.
Under a joint venture plan with growers and refiners,
Minneapolis-based Cargill Inc. will be the exclusive marketer of the refinery's industrial sugar used in food processing. Sugar Land, Texas-based Imperial Sugar Co., will market the refinery's bulk sugar.
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