McKinney: Ag Sector on 'Quite a Roll'

Posted: Updated:

The director of the Indiana Department of Agriculture says he thinks the state's ag sector can continue its recent momentum. Within the last week, Walmart (NYSE: WMT) has announced plans to build one of the nation's largest milk processing operations in Fort Wayne, Krone North America detailed a relocation from Tennessee to Shelbyville and the groundwork is being laid for a potential $230 million cheesemaking facility in Newton County. Ted McKinney says the stage has been set for these announcements because of efforts like Agrinovus Indiana, and when it comes to the diary sector, a realization that four million pounds of unprocessed milk leaves the state each day.

When it comes to the dairy sector, he says officials came to the realization a year ago that four million pounds of unprocessed milk leave the state each day. He says the state acted on "instinct" that dairy was "flying under the radar" and had great, untapped potential. McKinney says leaders then began developing and launching a comprehensive plan to take advantage of opportunities in the industry.  McKinney says everything lined up, despite different timing for each of the recent developments. "We had excess milk, we have good farmers, we have a good supply. Our infrastructure is good and getting better. The business climate in the state is always referenced by other people, unsolicited, I might add."

McKinney, who will be featured next week on Inside INdiana Business Television. He also serves as agriculture director for the Indiana Economic Development Corp.

McKinney says, while nearby states have faltered, Indiana has been successful.
  • Perspectives

    • (photo courtesy of Conexus)

      October Celebrates Indiana’s Vibrant Manufacturing Industry

      Indiana is the most manufacturing intensive state in the country and more than a third of the state’s GDP comes from the industry. The health and wellness of Indiana’s economy is dependent on the state’s manufacturing industry. But Hoosiers face a challenge: it is expected that nearly a quarter of the current manufacturing workforce will be of retirement age in the next 10 years and we lack the generational workforce to make up that gap.



  • Most Popular Stories

    • (image courtesy of The Times of Northwest Indiana)

      U.S. Steel Updates Layoff Notice to State

      Pittsburgh-based U.S. Steel Corp. (NYSE: X) has updated the State of Indiana regarding its previously announced layoffs at the East Chicago Tin Mill. The company says 314, rather than 307, workers will be displaced when the mill is idled this fall. 

    • Regal Beloit is closing in Valparaiso. (photo courtesy; The Times of Northwest Indiana)

      Valpo Bearings Plant to Close, Eliminating 160+ Jobs

      Wisconsin-based Regal Beloit Corp. and the union representing workers have reached an agreement about the closing of a helicopter bearing factory in Valparaiso. According to our partners at The Times of Northwest Indiana, the decision will cost between 160 to 170 workers their jobs. 

    • AM General & Fiat Chrysler announce plans to build military grade Jeep Gladiator pickup trucks.

      AM General, FCA Collaborate on New Military Grade Jeep

      Nearly 80 years since the first jeep rolled off the assembly line, and helped support American soldiers throughout World War II, it appears the trusted four-wheel-drive machine may be making a comeback in the U.S. military. South Bend-based AM General LLC has teamed up with Fiat Chrysler Automobiles to build military-grade versions of the 2020 Jeep Gladiator pickup truck. 

    • Red Star announced plans to expand and add 18 jobs.

      Larwill Medical Device Maker to Expand, Add Jobs

      A Whitley County-based medical device maker has announced plans to expand its facility in Larwill which should mean new jobs. Red Star Contract Manufacturing Inc. says it will invest $1.6 million in real estate improvements and additional equipment and will create 18 new jobs by 2022. 

    • Jaci Lederman

      Vincennes Professor Wins Prestigious Award

      The International Council of E-Commerce Consultants has honored Vincennes University faculty member Jaci Lederman with the Academic Instructor Circle of Excellence award. She is chair and associate professor of the Information Technology Department. Lederman won the distinction due to her commitment to cybersecurity education.