ASPA Member Feature: Gulf Crown Seafood Company Inc.
March 19, 2021
Gulf Crown Seafood Company Inc. has been in operation since 1987 when it opened in Delcambre, Louisiana, which is a city centrally located on the Gulf of Mexico, and is about the halfway point between the Texas and Florida coastlines.
Every morning, Jeff Floyd, president of the processing plant, drives down a special road to get to work. As he arrives at 306 Jon Floyd Road and walks up the steps to his office, an empty desk sits across from his and serves as bittersweet determination to keep the company moving forward with a standard of excellence just like his brother did.
Jon passed away 10 years ago, but not a day goes by that Jeff doesn’t think about the person who introduced him to the shrimp industry, and altered his career path for the better.
“Jon is a big part of our story,” Jeff says. “He’s the reason why we’re here.”
In 1987, Jon partnered with three brothers to open a small plant named Sims Brothers Seafood. After the brothers parted ways from the company in 1992, Jeff got a call from Jon who asked if he would be interested in partnering with him to take an adventure in the seafood industry, a line of work that Jeff knew nothing about.
Prone to embracing opportunities with an open mind, Jeff jumped on board for a new experience that required him to learn all aspects of the processing business. He may have been a partner, but he was on the front lines with entry-level employees to gain as much knowledge as possible, and although it was demanding and stretching, he enjoyed every minute of working in the strong family environment Jon had established in his company.
Jeff’s background in coal mining, construction and millwork greatly prepared him for the hands-on business he was stepping into, but he laughs when recalling how nothing prepared him for moving his family from Birmingham to Delcambre — big city life to a small Cajun town.
“That was a real shock,” he says. “The people here are good, and it was a blessing we ended up here, but the culture was a big difference.”
And then, of course, there was the Cajun-French language, the heavy accents, and the unique sayings from plant employees that also took some time getting used to: “Instead of saying, ‘Take the shrimp and put them in the cooler,’ they’d say, ‘You want me to save up the shrimp,’” which was then followed by Jeff shaking his head in confusion as he replied, “Do what?”
Another language lesson: “When going to the store with somebody, they’d say, ‘You want to get down,’ and that means get out of the truck, and lunch also means dinner,” he laughs. “Small things like that made me do a double-take at the Cajun-French culture in the plant, but I think it’s great.”
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