Above: A look inside the Murano assembly line at the Nissan plant in Canton, Mississippi, the state's third-largest manufacturing plant based on number of employees (Image courtesy of Nissan)
With its low business costs and abundant shovel-ready sites, the state of Mississippi is home to a number of powerful manufacturing companies, including some top names in the auto and food industries. Today, we’re providing an inside look at the into the state’s manufacturing sector based on data collected by MNI and exploring the top industrial companies in Mississippi.
According to MNI, compiler of the industrial information that powers IndustrySelect, Mississippi is currently home to 2,300 manufacturers employing 159,785 workers.
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According to MNI, Pascagoula is Mississippi’s largest city based on number of industrial jobs, with 15,331 workers. This is followed by Laurel with 7,143 jobs.
Read more: Top Manufacturing Cities in the U.S.
Other top cities in Mississippi include
• Canton (4,680 jobs)
• Tupelo (4,403 jobs)
• Columbus (4,216 jobs)
Jackson County is Mississippi’s largest in terms of industrial jobs, home to 16,016 workers. This is followed by Jones with 13,176 workers, Hinds (12,398), and Lee (11,502).
The transportation equipment industry is powerful in Mississippi, with that sector ranking as the state’s top manufacturing sector, comprising 16% of its industrial workforce. This is followed by food products with 15%, and fabricated metals with 11%. Furniture and fixtures accounts for 10% of Mississippi’s manufacturing workforce, while fabricated metal products make up 9%.
MNI reports there are 10,150 executive contacts among Mississippi’s manufacturing companies, including 1,078 presidents, 854 owners and partners; 613 vice-presidents and 532 sales, marketing and purchasing executives.
Other facts to know about Mississippi manufacturers, based on IndustrySelect’s advanced criteria available to subscribers, include ownership, distribution and other trends. Let’s take a look:
• 2% of Mississippi manufacturers are women-owned
• 10% are publicly owned companies
• 16% import raw materials
• 16% distribute their products internationally.
Next, we’ll take a look at the state’s top companies.
|Ingalls Shipbuilding, Inc.||12,000||Pascagoula||MS|
|Howard Industries, Inc.||4,000||Laurel||MS|
|Nissan North America, Inc.||3,500||Canton||MS|
|Continental Tire The Americas, LLC||2,500||Clinton||MS|
|Ashley Furniture Industries LLC||2,200||Ecru||MS|
|Toyota Motor Manufacturing Mississippi, Inc.||2,000||Blue Springs||MS|
|Tyson Foods, Inc.||1,700||Carthage||MS|
|Wayne Sanderson Farms, LLC||1,700||Summit||MS|
|Chevron Products Co.||1,600||Pascagoula||MS|
|Modine Grenada, LLC||1,500||Grenada||MS|
1. Ingalls Shipbuilding (Pascagoula, MS)
Ingalls Shipbuilding is a massive U.S. naval defense contractor, which operates at a sprawling Pascagoula site. Employing 12,000 industrial workers, Ingalls produces high-tech steel warships for the surface Navy fleet, U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Marine Corps, as well as foreign and commercial customers.
2. Howard Industries, Inc. (Laurel, MS)
Howard Industries, Inc employs 4,000 Mississippi workers in Laurel and produces lighting fixtures for industrial, residential, commercial and utility application. The company has two other Mississippi locations in Ellisville and Sandersville.
3. Nissan North America, Inc. (Canton, MS)
Employing 3,500, Nissan’s Canton plant is Mississippi’s third-largest industrial employer. Established in 2003, more than 4 million vehicles have been produced at this location.
4. Continental Tires Americas, LLC (Clinton, MS)
Operating out of a five-million square-foot facility in Clinton, Continental Tires is among the latest major manufacturing locations to call Mississippi home, established in 2019. Employing 2,500, this operation focuses on the production of large truck and bus tires.
5. Ashley Furniture Industries, Inc. (Ecru, MS)
Ashley Furniture’s Ecru facility is the largest upholstery producing facility in the world and the fourth-largest industrial employer in the state of Mississippi, employing 2,200. Established in 1945 in Chicago, Ashley Furniture Industries is now headquartered in Arcadia, Wisconsin.
6. Toyota Motor Manufacturing Mississippi, Inc. (Blue Springs, MS)
Established in 2011, Toyota’s Blue Springs site produces the popular Toyota Corolla, producing 170,000 vehicles per year. This is one of fourteen Toyota facilities in the United States and is among its largest, employing 2,000.
7. Tyson Foods, Inc. (Carthage, MS)
Tyson Foods is a multinational food products giant. The company’s Carthage location employs 1,700 and focuses on poultry processing.
8. Wayne Sanderson Farms, Inc (Summit, MS)
In 1951, D.R. Sanderson and his two sons D.R. and Joe Frank started the Sanderson Brothers enterprise, later becoming Sanderson Brothers Farms. Today, Sanderson Farms, Inc is the state of Mississippi’s only Fortune 1000 company, engaged in the production and processing of poultry and other prepared food items.
9. Chevron Products Co. (Pascagoula, MS)
Chevron is a global energy corporation, headquartered in San Roman, CA with 44,679 employees worldwide. The company’s Pascagoula location focuses on petroleum refining and employs 1,600.
10. Modine Grenada, LLC (Grenada, MS)
Rounding out our top ten list is Modine Grenada, a producer of heat transfer coils, serving the replacement parts and OEM markets as well as coolers for the power industry. The company employs 1,500 at this location and 12,000 worldwide.
Interested in other states? Browse all of our state news here.
For those looking to do business with manufacturers, IndustrySelect’s database of 460,000 U.S. manufacturers is a top resource for both developing and researching sales leads in the manufacturing sector. An IndustrySelect subscription can put you on a first-name basis with Mississippi’s 2,900 industrial companies and 10,000+ executives. Subscribers can select up to 40 data points on any manufacturing company in the U.S. to help identify or pre-qualify leads. Company profiles also include the contact information for hard-to-find executive decision-makers. Try a free demo today!
Editor's Note: This article was originally published in May of 2021. It is updated annually to reflect new statistics on Mississippi's manufacturing sector.