Winnebago County is conveniently located near major shipping routes and has a large number of people available to work. But the study showed the one thing missing was a positive business climate.
The NIU study was made public Wednesday. In the meeting the Rockford area economic development corporation explained that the food processing industry has been growing in the United States in the last five years. On the other hand industrial manufacturing seems to have hit its peak years ago. Winnebago County is still a highly industrial county, the problem is when recession hits, the work force is hit hard. Thee food processing industry is more stable as people will always need to eat, and it’s harder to send jobs in the food industry overseas.
The study also shows that food processing jobs are typically ones which require few skills. That would fill a local need as the area has high unemployment and falls behind the nation averages for college educated residents.