Business Facilities Magazine’s 14th Annual Metro Rankings are in and the Decatur area received a first-place ranking in their Agricultural Bioscience Employment category. Their editors based their ranking on agricultural feedstock employment leaders from the 2018 BIO Report. The agricultural feedstock and industrial biosciences subsector applies life sciences knowledge, biochemistry and biotechnologies to the processing and production of agricultural goods as well as organic and agricultural chemicals. The subsector also includes activities around the production of biofuels and feedstocks for biobased polymers. Examples of such products include: corn and soybean oil, ethanol and biodiesel fuels, plastics and textiles synthesized from plant-based feedstock, and biobased ingredients for cosmetics, personal care products, flavors and fragrances.
“People are astounded when they learn about the array of products that are produced by Decatur, Illinois companies,” said Ryan McCrady, president of the Economic Development Corporation of Decatur-Macon County. “A first-place ranking highlighting our prominence in the agricultural bioscience sector recognizes Decatur’s strong workforce and grabs the attention of companies looking to expand their businesses into the Midwest.”
The Decatur Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) had twice the number of people employed in the feedstock and biosciences subsector compared to second-place finisher Houston, Texas and three times that of the Chicago MSA. Decatur is home to global companies like ADM and Tate & Lyle, and a broad-based network of ancillary and supporting businesses.
“ADM’s operations in Decatur — and our people here — have been instrumental to our company’s success for generations,” said Chris Cuddy, ADM senior vice president and president of the company’s Carbohydrate Solutions business unit. “Today, while our company is doing business in more places around the world than ever before, Decatur remains home to more ADM colleagues than any other single location in our global network, and we will continue to work with community leaders to promote Decatur as a great place to live, work and do business.”
The Economic Development Corporation of Decatur & Macon County is a nonprofit public-private partnership responsible for non-retail business attraction, expansion and retention efforts in Decatur & Macon County. Composed of a combination of leading private sector employers, labor, educational institutions and a variety of governmental bodies, the EDC is uniquely positioned to address the needs of Macon County’s existing business and employer base along with prospective businesses looking to locate in and around the Decatur, Illinois area. The EDC works with local, state and federal partners to provide economic, technical and training assistance to businesses in the Macon County area.