Missouri is one of the best places for manufacturing in the US, with a track record of attracting investment that drives economic growth and creates jobs. The state’s location, in addition to a low corporate tax rate, make Missouri an ideal region for manufacturing firms, in sectors as diverse as food, automobiles and aerospace components.

Manufacturing has long been a key part of the Midwest’s cultural identity. Today, the region is embracing Industry 4.0 manufacturing, including the production of more than 560,000 automotive vehicles in 2022 alone. The state leads the way in advanced manufacturing, building renowned military aviation as well as North America’s top-selling trucks and vans.

Why manufacturers are choosing Missouri

First, Missouri is an ideal distribution point for exporting and importing goods. In fact, the state exports more than $14.1bn each year. The first hurdle when choosing a manufacturing site is logistics: how will it affect supply chain costs, and is it a strategic location for delivering to customers? A central location and excellent transport links mean that Missouri ticks the first box for manufacturers looking to launch or expand their business in the US.

With a corporate income tax rate of only 4%, Missouri is one of the most tax-friendly states in the US. According to the Tax Foundation, the state is third best for corporate income tax in the US, fourth best for unemployment insurance tax, and seventh best for property tax, meaning manufacturers can keep their business costs low. Incentive programmes include grants of up to $25m in tax credits to automotive manufacturers, as well as Missouri BUILD (Business Use Incentive for Large-scale Development), which uses bond financing for public or private infrastructure or new capital improvements for large projects that meet investment and job creation requirements.

Incentives for manufacturers creating employment opportunities brings us to one of the most important elements for the manufacturing industry: the workforce. Missouri offers a talent pool of more than 3 million educated workers, in addition to transport links to talent in 29 other states.

Missouri is home to manufacturing centres of excellence, including the Robert W Plaster Center for Advanced Manufacturing at Ozarks Technical Community College, as well as the St Louis Regional Advanced Manufacturing Innovation Center, which is being built with the help of a federal grant.

Supporting economic growth in the Midwest

Missouri Partnership is a public-private economic development organisation that supports businesses that are looking to grow in the state. In 2022 alone, Missouri Partnership was involved in six major investment wins that qualified as manufacturing projects, creating almost 1,800 jobs and an annual payroll of more than $101m. Total capital investment exceeded $1.3bn.

Missouri Partnership recently supported Deli Star to expand its business by opening a new 110,000-square-foot facility in St Louis, further enhancing Missouri’s rich ecosystem of leading food manufacturers.

According to Justin Siegel, Deli Star Corporation’s CEO: “When choosing a manufacturing location, as a people-first company, we assess the workforce first. Having a talented community of food production workers, engineers, food scientists, safety and quality professionals was our first assessment and reason for choosing St Louis, Missouri. The location and cost of doing business came as close seconds. This trifecta made it an easy choice for us and our business was able to rebuild and rebound beyond expectations because of the people of Deli Star and Missouri Partnership.”

To find out more about how Missouri Partnership can support you in developing a manufacturing project in Midwest America, download the whitepaper below.