Johnny Halili migrated from Albania to the United States in the 1970’s. Upon arrival in America he lived in the projects of Chicago. Johnny got his first job at a local car wash. He moved from job to job until relocating to Louisiana after hearing of work from his cousin.
His first job in Louisiana was as a deckhand. He had never been on a boat before so you can imagine the cultural shock that was. But, after many years of hard work, he fell in love with the concept and bought his first boat, Lady Katherine.
Johnny’s best deckhand over the years was his wife Lisa Halili. Together they weathered many cold winters oyster fishing and hot summers shrimping. From that one boat, and a lot of hard work, Johnny and Lisa created a successful family business.
Johnny started an oyster company unlike any other. In the summer of 2010, Prestige Oysters installed the Quintus 350L HPP machine from Avure Technology to treat and shuck oysters. Recently the Cryo-Quick tunnel also known as IQF (Instant Quick Freeze) has been installed to freeze oysters. At present day, Prestige Oyster provides a market for over 100 oyster boats and sells over $20 million worth of oysters every year.
Prestige Oysters is a family owned and operated company. The Halili family realizes that being in the oyster business comes with a responsibility and as Raz says, “It is important to us, as a company, to create a sustainable oyster resource so that we can harvest oysters year in and year out for years to come. Prestige Oyster, Inc. is one of the nations leading year-round oyster producers. We specialize in fresh, frozen and high pressure processed oysters and our goal is to provide our customers with the freshest, highest quality oyster product available.”
The Prestige Oysters Company’s legacy is a true American success story. Starting out with that one boat, and now creating and farming a delicacy that is an American product shipped all over the nation, is a dream come true for Johnny and his family.
For more information about Prestige Oyster’s, Inc. call 281-339-2111 or go to www.prestigeoysters.com.