NEW IBERIA, La. – The Louisiana Sugar Cane Festival and Fair Association announced today that New Iberia sugarcane farmer Daniel E. Gonsoulin will reign as King Sucrose LXXI over the 2012 Sugar Cane Festival Sept. 27-30.
Gonsoulin, the head of a third-generation sugarcane family, has been farming sugarcane since 1972.
"I thought I was going to be a mechanical engineer,” Gonsoulin said. "I went to the old USL for a while, then I worked for Shell Chemical in Geismar before coming back to the farm helping my daddy.
’”I guess sugarcane is in my blood.”
Gonsoulin, a New Iberia native, graduated from New Iberia Senior High School in 1962. His 1972 crop was the first of 39 consecutive harvests. He began his own farming operation, Gonsoulin Farms, LLC, in 1986, and the 2012 crop will be his 40th.
Gonsoulin has served in several leadership roles in the sugarcane industry over the years.
He is a member of the American Sugar Cane League (ASCL) and the Louisiana Farm Bureau Sugar Advisory Committee. He has served on seven ASCL committees and chaired the state Farm Bureau Sugar Advisory Committee. He has also represented Louisiana on the National Sugar Advisory Committee and was instrumental in helping the ASCL and Farm Bureau organizations work more closely for the good of the industry.
Gonsoulin married his high school sweetheart, the former Jeanette Babineaux, and they have three children, Aimee, Ricky and Keith. His sons are also sugarcane farmers. The Gonsoulins have eight grandchildren.
The American Sugar Cane League congratulates Daniel for his selection as King Sucrose LXXI.