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Food Production & Processing "Top Five" Awards of Excellence 2016

WindsorEssex Economic Development Corporation
Windsor, Ontario, Canada

Windsor-Essex is a diverse and welcoming region made up of nine communities - Windsor, Amherstburg, Essex, Kingsville, Lakeshore, LaSalle, Leamington, Peelee Island and Tecumseh. An international cosmopolitan area where culture, arts, major-league sports and music fuse in an enticing and always-stimulating environment with Festivals and Events designated in the Top 100 Best being held all year long.

Few communities offer a more exciting combination of strategic advantages. Start with geography: our border location straddles the NAFTA Superhighway and transcontinental rail lines, within a day’s drive of half of North America’s population. Several airports serve the area, including Windsor International Airport and a major international hub. Our deepwater port in the heart of the Great Lakes St. Lawrence Seaway System welcomes and serves cargo ships from around the globe. Windsor-Essex is the busiest commercial border crossing in North America handling one third of all Canada-U.S. trade. Now, with the new Herb Gray parkway leading to the planned Gordie Howe International Bridge (a $4B investment), Windsor-Essex is the epicenter of international logistics in North America.

Our climate is among Canada’s most temperate, supporting one of North America’s most productive agricultural and viticulture regions. Our intellectual climate is even more impressive, with several major Canadian and U.S. universities and colleges in the immediate region, and dozens of leading research centers on both sides of the border.

It is a region with deep roots in advanced manufacturing where a highly skilled and dynamic workforce remains a key attraction to investors and developers. Other key sectors include: Agri-Business, Life Sciences, Transportation, Logistics and Warehousing and Professional Services.

Windsor-Essex is an ethnically diverse region where people from all of the world’s major cultural and faith traditions find welcoming communities.

In addition to these strategic advantages, Windsor-Essex is one of Canada’s most cost effective regions with serviced land costs at a fraction of what you’d pay in the GTA and a healthy market in established properties and facilities. Windsor-Essex is one of the most business-friendly locations with a Business Ombudsman in place to support investors/businesses, a lower Ontario Corporate tax rate compared to U.S., a low Canadian dollar and housing costs among Canada’s most affordable.

Major corporate headquarters such as Jamieson Laboratories, Unico, Diageo, FCA and Hiram Walker just to name a few have located in Windsor, taking advantage of our strategic location and our expanding air, land, and water distribution networks.

The WindsorEssex Economic Development Corporation at every opportunity is pleased to promote the fact that in 2011, the Windsor-Essex Region was designated one of the world’s Top 7 Most Intelligent Communities (Intelligent Community Forum). Our region is undeniably positioned to grab the attention of investors worldwide.

Operation Oswego County, Inc.
Oswego County, New York

Situated in Upstate New York, Oswego County is located centrally to New York City, Boston, Philadelphia, Cleveland, Toronto and Montreal. A great location, skilled labor and a host of transportation options place Oswego County at the top of the list for site selectors.

Oswego County is a truly multi-modal location with many affordable transportation options for the shipment of goods. The county offers convenient access to Interstates 81 and 90 which provide north/south and east/west movement. The Port of Oswego is a deep-water port and the first port-of-call in the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Seaway System. CSX rail service is available throughout the County, with direct access at several sites and industrial parks. Oswego County has a local airport and is also within minutes of Syracuse’s Hancock International Airport.

As a designated Foreign Trade Zone (FTZ #90), Oswego County is designed for the convenient and cost effective production and distribution of goods.

Oswego County has a skilled workforce, many with previous food processing and manufacturing experience, who are ready to work. The area’s workforce is supported by over 30 institutions of higher learning within 50 miles. These educational institutions work collaboratively with economic development organizations, workforce training centers and industry to create a pro-business environment.

Many food processing and industrial facilities require water for processing. Oswego County offers high quality potable water and available capacity for industrial waste water treatment. Depending on your location, you could tap into nearly limitless water from Lake Ontario or access up to 10,000,000 gallons available daily from the Onondaga County Water Authority (OCWA). There are also several options for water treatment including municipal treatment and a future private treatment facility with over 5,000,000 gallons of excess capacity.

All of these advantages have enabled Oswego County to attract several growing companies that have purchased existing facilities and expanded their food processing and manufacturing ventures.

Vineland Department of Economic Development Vineland, New Jersey
Vineland, New Jersey

Located in the heart of the Northeast corridor, Vineland, New Jersey offers both an affordable location and an excellent quality of life. The city is home to a diversified group of regional and international food processing and agri-business companies including Archer Daniels Midland, Bridor USA, Hanover Foods, Rich Products, and AdvancePierre Foods. Added to that mix is the Vineland Produce Auction, which is the largest farmers’ cooperative on the East Coast.

Vineland is conveniently located along New Jersey Route 55, providing a quick and direct connection to the Atlantic City Expressway, the New Jersey Turnpike, and Interstates 95 and 295, which link the city with major markets along the East Coast.  Additionally, Vineland offers rail service and quick access to air freight service and deep water port facilities, both with foreign trade zones.

Vineland has two municipally-owned industrial parks which offer per acre prices significantly lower than most other northeast locations, as well as, a number of sites and existing facilities located outside of the two industrial parks. Commercial rental rates, construction, and labor costs are also very competitive within the region.  Furthermore, companies benefit from low-cost electric, water, and sewage rates through the Vineland Municipal Utilities; a variety of state and local financial incentives; customized workforce training programs; and a designated Urban Enterprise Zone.

Vineland is also home to a number of partner industries critical to the success of food processing operations including over 20 million cubic feet of freezer and cold storage capacity which ensure food products reach retail markets in excellent condition. In addition to storage, these facilities repackage bulk shipments for brokers of fresh fruits and produce from as far away as New Zealand, Chile, and Africa
Once the food is processed, you need to get it to the stores.  Food processing and other agri-business companies will find a number of trucking firms in Vineland which carry market-ready canned and bottled foods and beverages, dry food products, and frozen and temperature-controlled foods in modern trailers to locations throughout the United States.

We invite you to discover what sets Vineland apart! Our proximity to millions of potential customers, our low-cost of doing business, our business-friendly attitude, and our uncongested environment make Vineland an attractive place to expand your current operations or start an entire new enterprise.  Contact the Department of Economic Development at 856.794.4100 for more information.

Southern Idaho Economic Development Organization
Jerome, Idaho

As "America's Most Diverse Food Basket", food production, processing, and science serve as the economic foundation for southern Idaho's robust economy. Southern Idaho's six-county region leads the states agribusiness industry by contributing over 54 percent of the state's record $9.7 billion total ag receipts for 2014.

In 2015, Southern Idaho received the national "stamp of approval" by being the fourth and smallest region in the U.S. to earn the prestigious Federal Manufacturing Community Designation in the Food category from the U.S. Department of Commerce.

This designation further cements this small region's economic dominance in all things food in the global marketplace.

 With Southern Idaho Ag production in 18 categories ranking in the top 4 in Idaho and in 28 categories in the top 13 nationally, this unique region boasts some impressive agribusiness stats:

  • Sold more than $7 billion of related goods and services and contributed
  •  $3.4 billion to Idaho's gross state product
  • Over 15,000 of total area jobs are farm or processing related
  • Over one third of Magic Valley jobs are directly or indirectly created by agribusiness
  • Sixty seven percent of employers are in food manufacturing
  • Southern Idaho ranks in the top third of U.S. states for food processing

The area boasts a strong agricultural base of row crop farming of sugar beets, potatoes, barley, winter/summer wheat, alfalfa hay, corn, and seed production as well as pork processing, cattle/calves, dairy production/processing, aquaculture, lamb, mink, and honey production.

Few if any other region in the country has this depth in agribusiness.

These diverse food categories have generated a wide range of products and complimentary support services that sustain and help grow this economic base including food processing, food science, R&D, warehousing, distribution, cheese/yogurt production, potato processing, and meat processing to name a few.

 The diversity of Southern Idaho's agricultural base provides an abundant resource of raw materials for many food processors. In addition, a fully-developed infrastructure is in place to process, package, store, and transport products to market locally, nationally, and internationally.

AK-Chin Community Santa Cruz Commerce Center
Maricopa, Arizona

If you are looking for a new site for your food processing facility, you may want to consider the benefits Santa Cruz Commerce Center (SCCC), the Ak-Chin Indian Community's industrial park, can offer your business. As a federally-recognized tribe, they can offer unparalleled tax advantages, incentives, and project fast-tracking abilities that most states, counties and municipalities simply cannot.

Additionally, SCCC was recently verified as an Arizona Gold Certified Site by the Arizona Commerce Authority (ACA).  A certified site designation helps national site selection consultants, corporate real estate professionals and companies seeking to relocate or expand quickly identify locations that can speed their projects to market.  According to Billy Hickman, Vice President of Operations of Hickman's Family Farms and a Santa Cruz Commerce Center tenant since 2003, this is what attracted their enterprise to the Ak-Chin Indian Community's industrial park. "Their ability to craft a customized lease allowed us to amortize construction costs over the length of a long-term lease and have a facility built to our specifications in just 10 months," said Hickman. "We've been able to expand two more times since our initial construction, too.

Currently SCCC has approximately 45 acres of leasable land for owner-built or build-to-suit projects. Current tenants include egg producer, Hickman's Family Farms and a farm equipment dealership, M&S Equipment. Target industries are food processing, agri-business supply chain, or plant-science research or manufacturing.

Finding a tribe with the same industry or cultural focus can also lead to some creative synergy. When we needed to find a solution for dealing with our chicken waste, we were able to create a reciprocal agreement with the tribe," said Hickman." Now we provide it to Ak-Chin Farms as fertilizer for growing the crops we need to feed our flocks."

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