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Central Region

central-minnesota-mapCentral Minnesota is a manufacturing stronghold, with several global manufacturing firms operating there.

The region is especially well known for its expertise in food processing, printing, furniture manufacturing, appliances, machinery and heavy equipment manufacturing.

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Going, Growing, and No Signs of Slowing

10/20/2015 10:09:32 AM

Luke Greiner

Manufacturing continues to be a powerful economic engine in central Minnesota, driving profits, prosperity and job growth.

In the past year alone, manufacturers added nearly 1,300 new jobs, more than any other industry in the region, continuing a four-year growth trend that shows no signs of slowing.

Almost 30 percent of all new jobs in central Minnesota are in manufacturing, and the industry has continued to move toward pre-recession employment levels. Though the region still has 2,623 fewer manufacturing jobs now than in 2006, full recovery is within reach. If recent growth trends continue, manufacturing could top its pre-recession employment in the next two years or so.

A closer look at manufacturing in the central region shows:

  • Twelve of the 18 manufacturing subsectors in the region gained jobs in the last year and two remained level.
  • The largest job growth was found in miscellaneous (largely medical device) products (up 394 jobs), followed by fabricated metal products (up 319 jobs) and transportation equipment (up 246 jobs).
  • Central region manufacturers had 610 job openings in the second quarter of 2015, with a median wage offer of $14.95, 31 percent higher than the wage offer for all jobs.
  • The highest average annual wages in manufacturing in central Minnesota are earned by workers in paper ($63,232), chemical ($61,828), and computer and electronic product ($57,772).
  • Only 10 percent of manufacturing openings were part-time, compared to 58 percent for all jobs.
  • A larger share of manufacturing openings required post-secondary education and prior work experience than the total of all jobs, indicating the high quality of jobs that manufacturers are striving to fill.

Some of the most highly concentrated industries in Central Minnesota are in manufacturing.

While central Minnesota accounts for about 1 in every 10 jobs in the state, the region provides 28 percent of all furniture products manufacturing employment.

Central Minnesota also provides about a quarter of Minnesota's transportation equipment manufacturing jobs, and plays a pivotal role in numerous other manufacturing subsectors.

Although the labor market continues to tighten and unemployment rates remain low, manufacturers in Central Minnesota added more jobs in 2014 than in 2013.

For More Information

Contact Luke Greiner at 320-308-5378.

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