The Langston Companies’ story is one of commitment, teamwork, growth, and spirit to excel. It began in 1946 as Langston Bag Company, a business employing a dozen workers in a 5000 square foot building on Empire Street in Memphis. Oddly enough, the original business of the company was recycling. Long before it was popular and necessary, Langston Bag Company reprocessed and recycled used burlap bags to package agricultural products.The company was founded by Forrest Byron “Rudy” Langston, who began the business in November 1946. Within six months the company began a series of moves into larger facilities, and under the leadership of Rudy Langston, it expanded into new products and into new production plants. In the 1960s, Langston expanded by acquiring the Mississippi Bag Company in Jackson, Mississippi and the Pelican Bag Company in Crowley, Louisiana, as well as starting Langston Bag Company of Puerto Rico.
While on a business trip to Spain in 1966, founding President F.B. Langston passed away unexpectedly. His son, Robert E. Langston, had managed several of the firm’s plants. He joined the in place management team and took over to keep the Langston program moving ahead.
The firm’s name changed to Langston Companies, Inc. to more accurately reflect the variety and growth of the organization. In 1970, the company built a modern multiwall paper bag plant in West Memphis, Arkansas, complete with modern printing and design departments for today’s packaging requirements.
Today, the Langston management team keys on four basic product areas. One product is multiwall paper bags. With plants in West Memphis and Peoria serving as central points for nationwide distribution and geographically positioned in the greatest agriculture producing region in the world, these bags primarily serve the agricultural, food, and industrial sectors. The second product emphasis is woven textile bags used for the export packaging of rice and other agricultural products. The third product is bulk bags, which enable customers to store and move thousands of pounds of product in a single container. The fourth product line has the strongest Memphis roots of all―the packaging of cotton. Langston is the industry’s only manufacturer and marketer of cotton bale wrapping and ties, which are distributed through company owned warehouses in California, Arizona, Texas, North Carolina, and Memphis. Langston packages “King Cotton” from cottonseed to cotton lint.
The company has a corporate commitment to quality, service, efficiency, and innovation, and is committed to progress through a teamwork concept. Open communication, participation in the firm’s improvement process by every employee teammate, and good corporate citizenship are keys to the company’s success.
Through the years many changes have taken place, but the same spirit to excel remains as much a part of the company today as it was in 1946.