October 6th Declared "Kansas Manufacturing Day"
"Kansas manufacturers have been a historical bedrock of the state's economy for more than 150 years, and companies continue to locate here because they know our state is a leader in supporting advanced manufacturing through education, business incentives, and a positive business climate," said Governor Brownback.
There are nearly 2,600 manufacturers in Kansas, employing 11.5 percent of the state's workforce and producing more than $22 billion annually in output. They help to drive the state's economy with more than $8 billion in annual manufactured goods exports to markets that include Canada, Mexico, Japan, China and United Kingdom.
Alan Cobb, President and CEO of the Kansas Chamber of Commerce said MFG DAY is designed to amplify the voice of individual manufacturers and coordinate a collective chorus of manufacturers with common concerns and challenges.
"MFG Day addresses common misperceptions about manufacturing by giving manufacturers an opportunity to open their doors and show, in a coordinated effort, what manufacturing is - and what it isn't," said Cobb.
Wichita manufacturer Darin Greseth, President, CEO and Chairman for BG Products, Inc., is a big proponent for the positive impact of Manufacturing Day in Kansas. BG Products manufactures and distributes high quality additives, cleaners, specialty lubricants and the professional equipment used to service vehicles all over the world.
"Manufacturing is one of the key industries for the State of Kansas and a very important part of our economy. Manufacturing Day was created to highlight companies that create local jobs and are great representatives for Kansas nationally and internationally. BG Products is proud to be based in the great state of Kansas," said Greseth.
Knit-Rite, a 94-year-old medical textile manufacturer in Kansas City, Kan. with approximately 90 employees in Kansas and another 90 in Hamlet, NC, will celebrate MFG Day with its management team honoring its employees for the work they do by cooking a pancake breakfast for the entire facility.
"For those that think that textiles have moved outside the U.S., we are proudly making products for the prosthetic, orthotic, diabetic, sensory and compression markets here in Kansas and North Carolina and shipping them throughout the United States and to over 50 countries worldwide", said Knit-Rite President Chris Vering.
With more than 2,000 employees worldwide, Compass Minerals is headquartered in Overland Park, Kansas, and has operated in Rice County since 1911.
"It's through recognized events like Manufacturing Day that we're able to shine a light on our employees who are bringing salt and plant nutrition products to consumers throughout North America. We are proud of our manufacturing employees and honored to be able to share this day with other Kansas employers in an effort to expand knowledge about manufacturing careers," said Fran Malecha, Compass Minerals President and CEO.
MFG Day also gives Kansas manufacturers a chance to highlight why being Kansas-based is a competitive advantage. Garmin manufactures a significant portion of its state-of-the-art avionics at its U.S. headquarters in Olathe.
"By manufacturing these products in Kansas as part of our vertically integrated business model, we are able to reduce the time it takes to bring a product to market, with higher efficiency and lower cost for our customers. Our manufacturing center is in relatively close proximity to many of our primary general aviation customers that are located in Wichita, which cuts down on logistical costs and speeds up just-in-time deliveries," said Ted Gartner, Director of Corporate Communications for Garmin International.
Spirit AeroSystems in Wichita is the state's largest private sector employer.
"Spirit AeroSystems produces large, complex aerostructures for the world's premier commercial and defense aircraft. Our nearly 11,000 Kansas employees, together with our 500 Kansas suppliers, are proud to contribute manufacturing muscle to our state's economy. The products we design and manufacture everyday here in Kansas provide our customers with innovative solutions to meet their demands for quality, cost and delivery," said Vic McMullen, Wichita Operations Vice President and GM.
Headquartered in Shawnee, Kansas, Bio-Microbics is changing the way people are thinking about waste water.
"Our commitment to innovation for the onsite water industry allows the employees, vendors, and distributors of Bio-Microbics to uphold Midwest values and ideals while we compete with many companies in over 70 countries to support more than 3,000 water-related projects a year," said Robert J. Rebori, President of Bio-Microbics, Inc. "Manufacturing Day celebrates the hard work of our employees at Bio-Microbics, who overcomes industry challenges to create simple, low-cost, robust water treatment solutions that are normally complex, to receive recognition as a top Kansas Manufacturer and a leader in Integrated Water Treatment Technology."
Click here to learn about MFG Day events in Kansas.
Attached photograph features Kansas Chamber staff with Governor Brownback. Back row, left to right: Kelsey Wiens, Jennifer Burgoon, Kent Beisner, Alan Cobb and Sherriene Jones-Sontag. Front row: Governor Sam Brownback