A diverse manufacturing sector serves as a critical component of Florida’s economy. More than 17,500 manufacturing operations in the state, ranging from traditional food processors to leading-edge clean technology, employ nearly 340,000.
With a workforce that is recognized as among the best in the nation, Florida offers manufacturers access to highly trained and skilled employees who are prepared to utilize the latest technologies and most aggressive production methods. The United States American Chamber of Commerce has identified Florida as the top talent pipeline state in its state-by-state analysis of policies, practices and funding related to post-secondary education and training.
Organizations like the Florida Advanced Technological Education Center (FLATE), a National Science Foundation Center of Excellence in high-technology manufacturing, and the Employ Florida Banner Center for Advanced Manufacturing, focus on ensuring that Florida manufacturers are able to recruit and retain the talent they need. Twenty of Florida’s 28 Community and State Colleges offer degree programs related to advanced manufacturing.
Florida’s strong business climate has been recognized by various publications and organizations, including ranking third on Chief Executive Magazine’s “Best States for Business” list. Florida gives manufacturers an advantage in moving supplies into their facilities and product out to customers using a comprehensive multi-modal transportation network. With 14 deepwater seaports, 21 commercial airports, two spaceports, almost 3,000 miles of rail, and 18,000 highway miles, manufacturing operations have the ability to easily move product across the state or around the globe.