Recipe for Success

Arkansas knows the food and beverage industry. We're home to Tyson Foods, one of the world’s largest food companies, and manufacturing facilities for some of the top companies in the industry, including PepsiCo, Nestle, JBS USA, Kraft Heinz, and many others. We're also an agricultural leader, producing 49 percent of all the rice in the United States. The Arkansas Economic Development Commission works diligently to assist food and beverage companies looking to start-up, expand or relocate. With a streamlined state government, competitive incentive programs, and available sites, we're ready to help food and beverage companies succeed here.

 

Arkansas Food & Beverage By the Numbers

  • At the end of 2019, there were 360 food and beverage companies in Arkansas, employing 55,500 people. 
  • Between January 2015 and August 2020, there have been 79 economic development projects in the food and beverage manufacturing industry, with 4,270 new jobs and $2.01 billion of proposed investments.
  • The growth rate of the food and beverage industry from 2015 to 2019 was 13.1 percent in Arkansas.

Arkansas Agriculture Rankings

  • #1 in rice production
  • #2 for broilers
  • #4 catfish (food size)
  • #4 cotton and cottonseed
  • #5 turkeys
  • #10 chicken eggs
  • #11 grain sorghum
  • #11 soybeans

EDUCATION

  • 45 colleges, universities & 2-year colleges
  • That state offers a wide range of education and training programs for food and beverage industry professionals.  
  • 2,100+ Engineering-related degrees and certificates 
  • AEDC’s Manufacturing Solutions offers multiple workshops and training sessions beneficial to businesses involved in the food and beverage industry.

MEETING THE WORKFORCE NEED

  • 23 of the top 25 food and beverage companies by revenue in the world have manufacturing facilities in the state.
  • Arkansas has the 2nd largest number of food processing workers in the South.
  • 360 companies employed over 50,500 Arkansans in the Food and Beverage Industry at the end of 2019.

INFRASTRUCTURE

  • Three U.S. Interstates connecting east and west coasts, and the Canada and Mexico borders, including I-30, I-55, and I-40
  • 16,418 miles of state and U.S. Highways – 12th largest system in the U.S.
  • Eight Intermodal freight facilities with four riverports
  • 2,505 miles of rail and three Class 1 rail systems
  • #3 in the nation with 1,000 miles of inland, navigable waterways
  • More than 90 public airports including Clinton National, Northwest Arkansas Regional, and close proximity to Memphis International Airport and the Fed-Ex hub

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Katherine Holmstrom

Senior Project Manager

(501) 682-7376

Katherine Andrews

Project Manager

(501) 682-6098

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AEDC's mission is to create economic opportunity by attracting higher paying jobs, expanding and diversifying our state and local economies, increasing incomes and investment, and generating positive growth throughout Arkansas. Here are some examples of businesses that are thriving!

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