Celebrating Manufacturers’ Month in Long Prairie - Manufacturers’ Breakfast with Minnesota Fresh

Wednesday, October 12, 2022

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An economy with a vibrant manufacturing base leads to more research and development, innovation, productivity, exports, and middle-class jobs. It has been seen that manufacturing jobs in a community help to raise living standards, sometimes more than in any other sector.

Kicking off on Manufacturing Day — Friday, October 1 —  and continuing throughout the month of October,  we celebrate companies in the community for their employment opportunities and innovations that grow our economy.

Manufacturing Day and Month celebrate modern manufacturing and are meant to inspire the next generation of manufacturers across the country.  Launched annually on the first Friday in October with events that continue throughout the month, Manufacturing Day helps show the reality of modern manufacturing careers by encouraging thousands of companies and educational institutions around the nation to open their doors to students, parents, teachers, and community leaders. Manufacturing creates careers that are full of opportunities for advancement and stability.

When it comes to manufacturing, the state of Minnesota has always ranked high. Manufacturing is growing steadily, and employment in this sector has been rising by over 11 percent since 2010. The state has over 8,300 manufacturers making a wider range of products. 

A Time for Business Appreciation: Minnesota Fresh 

The city of Long Prairie is home to a host of manufacturing companies that are producing goods using the latest technologies and the raw materials that are plentiful in Minnesota. These manufacturers are leaders in technology and good workplace practices, create high-quality products, and consistently innovate to keep in step with and progress in their industries. One of them is Minnesota Fresh, a company that provides consumers with high-quality fresh produce. The City of Long Prairie is hosting a Business Appreciation event - “Manufacturers’ Breakfast”, on October 18, 2022.  This event will feature Mary Jean Iszler, COO, of Minnesota Fresh. 

Ms. Iszler stated, “ Minnesota Fresh processes fresh, never frozen vegetables for extended shelf life.  The process was established in North Dakota by farmers looking to add value to their onion/potato crops, rather than selling them as a commodity.  They developed a vegetable product line that was launched in 2007 and is a key ingredient in the #1 selling meal kit in the US.  Increasing demand and a tight labor market compounded by close proximity to the Bakken oil fields led to relocating operations to Long Prairie in 2016. 

Starting with a 15,800 sq. ft. facility and 23 employees, the Long Prairie facility has been expanded to 38,700 sq. ft. and 60 employees to meet growing demand.  Minnesota Fresh also leases the 14,634 sq. ft. Incubator building from the City of Long Prairie as well as a 9,600 sq. ft. facility in rural Sauk Centre.”

Safe products for customers and a role model for the community

According to Ms. Iszler, Minnesota Fresh has set some high benchmarks for the company and for the community that it serves. “Our aim is to produce an exceptional quality, safe product for our customers, provide a safe, enjoyable work environment for our team members and strive to be an industry role model for the community”.  Iszler asserts, “As with any business, it is people that make Minnesota Fresh successful.  Long Prairie / Todd County provides the quality of life needed to attract a good labor pool with a strong work ethic.” 

The Manufacturers’ Breakfast event will be held on October 18, 2022, between 7 and 8 am, at Long Prairie Country Club. For more information on the event, please contact Luan Thomas-Brunkhorst, or call 320 732 2514. 

Category: News

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