Economic Opportunity for North Carolina
North Carolina has underused manufacturing capacity, particularly in the rural areas. Food ingredients, and their conversion to value-added products, represent an opportunity to put this capacity to use, creating a stronger North Carolina manufacturing sector.
In 2014, the General Assembly commissioned an economic feasibility study to evaluate food manufacturing’s potential in North Carolina. The study predicted that in less than 10 years, food manufacturing could contribute an additional 38,000 jobs and $10.3 billion boost to the state income annually, if key recommendations were realized.
But to leverage North Carolina’s agricultural diversity and overcome current market barriers, the state needs supportive infrastructure and programs.