Consortium strives to strengthen packaging machine baseIn July 2009, a group of leaders representing the Alexandria community’s automated packaging machine manufacturers joined forces with two community stakeholders to create the Packaging Machine Manufacturers’ Consortium (PMMC).
In July 2009, a group of leaders representing the Alexandria community’s automated packaging machine manufacturers joined forces with two community stakeholders to create the Packaging Machine Manufacturers’ Consortium (PMMC).
Since then, the organization has focused on increasing workforce and skill development through training and education, along with marketing the region’s automation expertise.
The Alexandria/ Douglas County region is a leading hub of automation technology, specifically in the area of automated packaging machinery. PMMC is working to promote the region as the Upper Midwest hub for automated packaging machine technology.
The hope of the group is that by better branding and promoting the region, they can improve the development and attraction of a component that all members desire: Skilled workers.
According to Rick Paulsen, president and COO of Douglas Machine of Alexandria, “The world of automated packaging machinery continues to change and evolve at an amazing rate, and here in the Alexandria area we have a number of the world’s leading innovators in this industry.
“While on a nominal level we compete for customer dollars, our largest shared area of competition is for skilled workforce.”
Employers from the Alexandria region are not only competing with each other for skilled workers, but with companies across the country.
By sharing resources and combining efforts, the members of PMMC hope they can develop interest in manufacturing careers and expand awareness of opportunities locally.
To date, PMMC has provided resources, funding and expertise to the Jefferson High School Robotics Team, Team Mechatronics, which was used for participation in the FIRST Robotics 10,000 Lakes Regional Competition. The team placed 22nd out of 65 competitors.
“The world of manufacturing is changing so quickly that the mindset of the past about these types of jobs being dirty, low-paying and undesirable is not even close to today’s reality,” commented Brian Baustian, general manager of ITW Heartland in Alexandria.
PMMC members include Aagard, Douglas Machine, ITW Heartland, Massman, LLC, Alexandria Area Economic Development Commission and Alexandria Technical and Community College.
To learn more about PMMC, its mission, its members and manufacturing careers in demand in the Alexandria area, visit the website www.
“The world of automated packaging machinery continues to change and evolve at an amazing rate, and here in the Alexandria area we have a number of the world’s leading innovators in this industry.” -Rick Paulsen, DOUGLAS MACHINE, PRESIDENT/COO
DID YOU KNOW?
• Manufacturing represents nearly 13 percent of all jobs in Minnesota (more than 340,000 people).
• Each manufacturing job supports another 1.3 jobs through supplier purchases and employee spending.
• In total, manufacturing accounts for nearly 800,000 jobs, or about 29 percent of all jobs, in Minnesota.
• With nearly $18 billion in annual wages, manufacturing accounted for about 15 percent of all wages paid in Minnesota in 2007.