MONROE, La. (AP) — A box plant started seven years ago with 40 employees, one contract and a $500,000 state grant has just completed a $4.5 million upgrade, with a new machine that can make up to 350 boxes a minute.
That's double the speed of the original box press, which is still in use at Louisiana Corrugated Products LLC, operating partner Kingsley McCrocklin told The News-Star (http://tnsne.ws/uX7N97).
The company now has 80 employees and lots of customers, McCrocklin said.
McCrocklin and plant manager Mark Tarver said the machine allows the company to expand its market and customer base. "We believe this is just the beginning," McCrocklin said. "It's the cornerstone of what we're going to build and where we're going to."
The Flexo Folder Gluer, was made in Japan, shipped to the West Coast and trucked to Monroe.
"It took nine trucks to get it here," Tarver said. "And they sent a team from Japan to make sure we get all of the kinks out of it."
Louisiana Corrugated makes boxes that other manufacturers use to ship their cartons or boxes.
"Manufacturing capabilities are advancing at such a rapid rate that we felt the need to make this commitment to compete," McCrocklin said. "Instead of a 10-year company, we're now a 30-year company."