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Milwaukee’s Economic Growth and Good Food Movement

by admin on December 7, 2010

For a long time Milwaukee has been well-known of three things, beer, cheese and sausages. But, in addition to those, the food and beverage companies also have a large hand in building up the metro region’s economy, says a new study.

In southeastern parts of Wisconsin, a veritable economic smorgasbord is widely available. Wholly, there are 253 food and beverage establishments that employ 14,700 staffs and make a combined yearly payroll of $590 million. According to the report by Milwaukee 7 economic strategy consortium, food processing makes up 9% of the metro region’s manufacturing base.

From Nestle SA of Switzerland to Cargill Inc. and Kraft Foods, seven of the world’s best 11 food processors operate out of this region.

In the past, no one took the trouble to look into the economic influence of the sector until M-7 conducted an analysis along with Deloitte Consulting LLC. What they have overlooked is that the region has all the factors of a full-blown industrial group with an adequate vital mass to undertake more jobs and make up for some of the attrition in other areas of the manufacturing base in the state, M-7 said.

There has been lot of brainstorming and actions to unite the rapidly rising craze of eating organic, fresh and locally cultivated food stuffs to the region’s food processors. This “good food movement” as M-7 identifies it, is a prime and unique proposal that separates Milwaukee from other similar regions that vie for new food sector venture. The good food movement gives rise to many new companies in areas relating to the food and beverage industry, such as this drink holder, which allows it’s user to have water or other healthy beverages within arms reach whether traveling or at work.

According to M-7 research, Wisconsin is placed in second position behind California for the number of manufacturers of certified organic food between the U.S. states and sixth for natively grown food products.

Wisconsin holds seventh position in the number of patents involving food products and processing. However, it is remarkable to note that here in the scene there are diverse players producing entirely different products, meat products from Cargill, beer from MillerCoors and cocoa from Archer Daniels Midland Co.

Here’s a list of Wisconsin’s ranking in agricultural production:
1. Beans, cheese, cranberries and ginseng
2. Butter, milk, milk cows
3. Carrots, potatoes, peas, sweet corn
4. Maple syrup, oats, tart cherries
5. Cucumbers, mint
Source: Wisconsin Agriculture Statistics, 2009

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