St. Landry Parish Profile

About the LSU AgCenter

The LSU AgCenter is dedicated to providing innovative research, information and education to improve people’s lives. Working in a statewide network of parish extension offices, research stations and academic departments, the LSU AgCenter helps Louisiana citizens make the best use of natural resources, protect the environment, enhance agricultural enterprises, and develop human and community resources.

Program Highlights

Family and Consumer Sciences

St. Landry Parish is ranked 52 out of the 64 Louisiana parishes for poor health behaviors. In St. Landry Parish; 42% of adults are obese, 25% smoke, 12.4% are diabetic, 34% are physically inactive, and childhood obesity has been increasing at an alarming rate. The St. Landry Parish LSU AgCenter has implemented the Expanded Food and Nutrition Program through a federal grant. An FCS Nutrition Agent has been added to the parish. Nutrition education classes are provided for both adults and youth. A partnership has been established with the school board to include EFNEP in our public schools.

4-H Youth Development

In 2018, 2.4 million STEM jobs were left unfilled. Between 2017 and 2027 the number of STEM jobs will grow by 13%. In a series of 4-H club meeting educational programs, 778 4-H youth were exposed to various career areas in STEM through hands-on science experiments and activities. As a result of participating in the Ready, Set, Experiment Lesson Study, 51% of youth reported learning about STEM careers, 36% learned about steps to take to have a career in STEM and 81% stated the lessons taught them new things about science.

Agriculture and Natural Resources

Agriculture is a staple for the local economy and contributes a net worth of $147 million. St. Landry Parish has a wide array of soil types, from the rich fertile soils along the Atchafalaya River where sugarcane and grain are produced to the Southwest Coastal Prairie where rice and crawfish are produced. Soybeans continue to be the leading crop with 100,000 acres grown annually. Sugarcane has grown to be the 3rd leading crop with 15,000 acres behind rice with 26, 000 acres annually. Rice remains strong due to its compatibility in a crawfish rotation with an estimated 25,000 acres of pond crawfish production. The livestock industry also has a great presence in St. Landry with equine and beef cattle production.

Whom we reach:

12,686 youth (includes 778 4-H members and 31 4-H Clubs)

5,616 adults (2,924 agriculture and natural resources and 2,692 family consumer sciences)

How we reach them:

4-H Clubs, school enrichment, field days, publications, newsletters, class series, website and workshops.

Expanding our efforts:

150 volunteers from 4-H, family and community and Master Horseman.

Parish Facts:

LSU AgCenter county agents provide research-based information on plant, aquaculture, wildlife and animal enterprises to St. Landry Parish residents. The total dollar amount from these commodities were: Animal enterprises, $21,919,198; aquaculture and wildlife, $31,603,547; plant enterprises, $93,926,069.

Land area — 923.88 square miles; Population —82,764; Population under 18 years old — 26.9%; Population 65 years old and over — 16.1%; Median household income — $32,163; Persons below poverty — 25.6%

Local issues and plans for this year

Increase productivity and profitability of Louisiana agriculture.

  • Educate producers on new issues facing the industry via newsletters, web page, social media, seminars, and farm visits.
  • Conduct research and demonstration plots for area crops.
  • Keep producers educated and informed concerning chemical industry & technology relative to GMO crops.
  • Conduct Master Cattleman Program, beef field days and educational programming.

Promote the wide use of natural resources and protection of the environment.

  • Collaborate with local organizations; Soil and Water Conservation, Farm Service Agency, Farm Bureau, and others.

Build leaders and good citizens through 4-H Youth Development.

  • Junior Leaders will work with local agencies such as CASA, Icons Food Bank and Refinery mission on their “Helping Hands Healing Hearts” homeless/poverty service-learning project.
  • 4-H club members will become aware of personal safety through a series of educational lessons presented at club meetings.

Strengthen families and communities

  • St. Landry residents will be given the information they need to know how to make wise food choices, read food labels, maintain a healthy weight, be physically active every day, have a healthy heart and practice food safety. To help decrease the risk of obesity and improve health and well-being for youth and adults.
  • Low income parents will receive training on practical parenting skills and money management.

How we are funded:

You are the local supporters and beneficiaries in the LSU AgCenter extension programs. Just 20% support keeps these programs in your community. Your parish extension office offers programs in:

  • Sustaining Louisiana agriculture, forestry and fisheries.
  • Building leaders and good citizens through 4-H Youth Development.
  • Family, nutrition and health to enhance the quality of life for Louisiana’s citizens.

LSU AgCenter State Appropriated Funds for FY 2019-2020:

  • State general direct: 74.9%
  • Federal funds: 13.6%
  • Self-generated: 7.1%
  • Statutory deductions: 4.4%

Innovate . Educate . Improve Lives

The LSU AgCenter and the LSU College of Agriculture