The roots of Heartland Catfish Company can be traced to the mid-1970’s when William Tackett, his son Jim Tackett, and his son-in-law Joe Walker, decided to begin raising catfish on 80 acres in the western part of Leflore County, near Schlater, Mississippi. From that 80 acres grew Tackett Fish Farms, the largest farm-raised catfish operation in the United States. Throughout the eighties and mid-nineties, Tackett Fish Farm sold its live catfish to various cooperative processing plants in the area, but the idea of building their own processing plant was constantly discussed among the three owners.