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Southeast Region: 2016 Manufacturing Highlights

10/4/2016 3:47:55 PM

southeast-2016Manufacturing is the second-largest industry in Southeast Minnesota, behind health care and social assistance. With an annual average of 37,847 jobs at 650 firms in 2015, manufacturing accounts for 15.9 percent of total employment in the region. That’s much more concentrated than in the state as a whole, where 11.4 percent of total jobs are in manufacturing.

From 2010 to 2015, manufacturers in Southeast Minnesota added 2,449 new jobs, an increase of 6.9 percent. In just the previous year, the number of jobs jumped by 665, but there were three less firms in the region. Employment patterns did see some variation during 2015, with the lowest number of jobs appearing during the first quarter, while the third quarter saw the highest count.

Food manufacturing is easily the largest sector with over 10,200 jobs, accounting for 27 percent of total manufacturing jobs in the region; followed by computer and electronic products with about 4,800 jobs (12.7 percent) and fabricated metal product manufacturing, with just under 4,100 jobs.

Manufacturing has the second largest payroll in the region, behind health care and social assistance. Total payroll in manufacturing was over $2.1 billion in 2015, accounting for 19 percent of total wages paid across all industries in Southeast Minnesota.

Average annual wages in manufacturing in the region were $55,952 in 2015. That was 19.2 percent higher than average annual wage across all industries, at $46,956. Manufacturing wages in the region increased 8.2 percent from 2010 to 2015, compared to an overall increase of 10.1 percent across all industries.

With average annual wages of $90,064, the highest-paying sub-sector in manufacturing was computer and electronic products, followed by textile product mills ($85,176), paper manufacturing ($76,700) and chemical manufacturing ($68,172).

Southeast Spotlight: Good Things in Smaller Packages

Southeast Minnesota has a large concentration of manufacturing with almost 16 percent of the total jobs in the region being in the industry. In all, there are 17 areas of manufacturing in Southeast Minnesota (see Figure 1).

Breakdown of Manufacturing in Southeast Minnesota, 2015

The region is dominated by food manufacturing, which accounts for 27 percent of all manufacturing jobs. Other areas of manufacturing that have high numbers of jobs include computer and electronic products (12.7 percent), fabricated metal products (10.8 percent) and machinery manufacturing (10.5 percent).

Beyond those large sectors, there are other types of manufacturing that are also critical for the region but have smaller job numbers. Included in this group are transportation equipment, electrical equipment, appliance and components, textile product mills, wood products, paper, primary metals, and beverage and tobacco products. Transportation equipment has the highest number of jobs in this group with 824, while beverage and tobacco product manufacturing sees the lowest with 80 (see Figure 2).

Job Counts in Lower Number Manufacturing in Southeast Minnesota

These seven sectors contribute to the area’s economy with a combined total payroll of $218 million, which is just over 10 percent of the total manufacturing industry payroll. Additionally, some of these divisions are among the highest-paying in the manufacturing industry as a whole, including textile product mills and paper manufacturing, both of which pay more than the average weekly wages of the manufacturing industry as a whole. Additionally, four of the seven sectors pay more than the wages across all industries (see Figure 3).

Average Weekly Wages, Southeast Minnesota

In fact, according to regional data from DEED’s Cost of Living tool, the average weekly wages for all but one of these categories is higher than those needed to cover the basic cost of living needs for the typical family, ranging from 23 to 162 percent higher.

So while these seven manufacturing sub-sectors may not be a dominant force in regards to jobs in the Southeast region, they’re still important. After all, they create products – textiles, paper, beverages and more – that greatly enhance the quality of life in the region.

For more information, contact Mark Schultz, 507-205-6068.


Southeast MN

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