While it’s still important, cotton doesn’t even make the cut in 2018.
When you’re discussing Arizona’s economy in 2018, new technologies and high-tech advancements are occurring at the speed of light, changing the game every day. But at the heart of Arizona’s economy, there are thousands of manufacturers — from industry leaders like Intel, Microchip, Honeywell, Raytheon, JDA Software and Frito Lay to smaller companies that are making a mark like HJ3 Composite Technologies, Kahtoola, Pivot Manufacturing and Instant BioScan. They are all driving the state into its next era of growth and al creating products that are made in Arizona.
“Greater Phoenix is a hub for manufacturing facilities,” says Greater Phoenix Economic Council President and CEO Chris Camacho. “More than 2,700 Arizona-based companies make this state one of the nation’s largest supply chain contributors for advanced manufacturing.”
According to the Arizona Commerce Authority, the impact of manufacturing cannot be denied:
• Total manufacturing employment exceeded 157,000 in 2014.
• One manufacturing job in Arizona supports an additional 1.29 jobs, which means that there are 202,000 additional jobs in Arizona supported by manufacturing.
• The average wages for a manufacturing position back in 2014 was $69,054. This is more than 50 percent higher than the average wage for all positions in Arizona.
• More than 80 percent of Arizona’s $22.6 billion in exports for 2015 were manufactured goods. The largest sectors for manufactured goods were electrical machinery, aircraft, spacecraft, machinery, and optics.
• The state ranks in the Top 5 in the nation for aerospace and defense manufacturing and ranks fourth in the nation for semiconductor employment.
With that in mind, here’s a look at 40 products that are manufactured and made in Arizona. These products show the innovation, diversity and tradition that define Arizona’s manufacturing sector.
Sub-Zero Group, a leading manufacturer of luxury appliances, began manufacturing operations in Goodyear in 2011 and it now produces over half of all Sub-Zero refrigeration products at the location.
Tucson-based SynCardia manufactures the world’s first and only FDA, Health Canada and CE approved Total Artificial Heart, which is used as a bridge to transplant, helping patients survive until a matching donor heart becomes available.
Valley Forge & Bolt Manufacturing Co. in Phoenix manufactures fasteners of many types — interference fit bolts, studs, special nuts, twelve-point flange, socket head, square bolts, hex bolts, pulverizing mill bolts and liner bolts.
Since launching in 2014, True Nopal has disrupted the natural beverage sector and is looking to outpace coconut water, the leading plant-based water in the beverage industry. True Nopal is currently sold more than 9,000 stores.
Cancer treatment drugs
Celgene’s Phoenix facility is manufacturing breakthrough therapies to treat breast, lung and pancreatic cancers, improving outcomes and quality of life for patients fighting the devastating diseases.
Frito-Lay has manufactured chips in Casa Grande since 1984 and the location vies with other Frito-Lay production sites every year for being the most competitive in terms of manufacturing volume.
Founded more than four decades ago, Cerreta Candy Co. in Glendale is still a family-run operation, manufacturing thousands of pieces of candy each day and attracting visitors who want to tour the factory.
The Ball Corporation’s new state-of-the-art beverage packaging manufacturing facility in Goodyear manufactures containers to serve a growing customer demand for specialty cans in the Southwestern U.S.
Founded in Chandler in 2008, Urban Oven uses fresh ingredients to manufacture artisan baked cookies and crackers. The treats are packaged in recycled materials to show the company’s commitment to the environment.
Bonded Logic, a textile recycling company in Chandler, collects thousands of pounds of denim jeans, shorts and jackets each year and gives them new life as insulation for homes and office buildings and fiber for bedding.
Tempe-based Runbeck Election Services provides election printing and mailing services for jurisdictions ranging in size from less than 1,000 and more 1 million and its products touch nearly 26 million registered voters across the nation.
R-Bar produces 17 different flavors of meal-replacement bars in Tucson. The bars are high in protein and fiber, have no preservatives or sweeteners are made in small batches to maintain quality control and are universally praised by fitness enthusiasts.
Western Heritage Furniture in Jerome manufactures custom furniture. The company is best known for its one-of-a-kind furniture pieces made from reclaimed lumber obtained from old buildings and barns.
Dexcom’s 180,000-square-foot manufacturing facility in Mesa produces continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) technology to help patients and healthcare professionals better manage diabetes.
Phoenix-based Karsten Manufacturing (PING) was the first manufacturer to offer high-quality cast golf clubs, which both reduced costs, allowed better quality control for high tech features and set the stage for manufactured fitting.
With manufacturing facilities in Prescott, Sturm, Ruger & Co. is one of the nation’s leading manufacturers of rugged, reliable American-made firearms for the commercial sporting market. Ruger is currently America’s largest firearm manufacturer.
Phoenix-based gLOVE Treat uses its patented Parasilk formula with essential oil to manufacture paraffin wax therapy gloves, mitts, and boots that are designed to soften and sooth hands and feet.
With more than 40 years in business, Tempe’s Bard Peripheral Vascular has manufactured a wide range of products and services for the medical device industry, including heart stents and angioplasty balloon catheters.
The Apache Attack Helicopter is the signature aircraft manufactured by Boeing in Mesa. Built to survive as it supports soldiers on the ground, the Apache earned the company slogan, “If the Apaches are flying, soldiers aren’t dying.”
Phoenix-based Bar-S Foods, with annual production of 40 million pounds, it is among the 40 largest meat processors in the United States. It is also one of Arizona’s largest privately owned companies.
Earlier this year, Tucson-based Raytheon Missile Systems was awarded a $634 million Air Force contract to manufacture Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missiles and perform related work under a foreign military sales deal.
Chandler’s VB Cosmetics manufactures Dazzle Dry, a quick-dry nail polish system that is revolutionizing the nail industry. The company sells direct to consumers at retail prices and to salons and spas at wholesale.
Prescott-based RESA Wear manufactures mobile kiosks that utilizes 3-D printer to produce custom orthotic inserts for shoes. The high-accuracy foot scanning lets customers get a pair of medical-grade insoles in about an hour.
Employees at Medtronic’s Tempe facility design, develop and manufacture defibrillators, spinal cord stimulators for pain management, deep brain stimulators that address movement disorders and the world’s smallest pacemaker.
Peanut Butter Americano is an all-natural and socially beneficial nut butter manufacturing company started by Brophy College Preparatory graduate Jeff Malkoon in 2013. It is found in more than 300 locations, including Sprouts and Whole Foods.
Starting with a single kettle and one delivery truck in 1986, Jay and Don Poore grew their potato chip business into a huge success. Poor Brothers went public in 1996 and became The Inventure Group in 2006 to create a corporate identity.
Hydronalix’s flagship product is the EMILY (EMergency Integrated Lifesaving LanYard), which Popular Science’s Best of What’s New Grand Award in the security category, setting the bar for innovation in maritime robotic systems.
Copper State Rubber, which built a new $30 million, 150,000-square-foot manufacturing facility in Avondale, has been building quality industrial, oilfield and mine hoses for more than 50 years.
Based in Chino Valley in the midst of many large working ranches, Simmons Saddlery manufactures saddles and chaps that are used by Cowpunchers in Arizona, Working Cow Horse Champions in Nevada, and Longtime Buckaroos in Idaho.
Orbital ATK in Gilbert, which became part of Northrop Grumman Innovation Systems in 2018, is one of the world’s preeminent satellite builders and is currently under contract with Thales Alenia Space to assemble, integrate and test 81 spacecraft for the Iridium NEXT program.
Chandler’s Intel facility manufactures a leading-edge computer chip utilizing the most complex manufacturing process in the world, using engineering magic to turns sand into semiconductors and build the foundation of the knowledge economy.
Rioglass Solar in Surprise designs and manufactures optical CSP (concentrated solar power) and CPV (concentrator photovoltaics) components. Rioglass Solar is now the largest supplier of concentrating mirrors in the market.
Phoenix-based Mobile Mini manufactures, leases, sells, and transports welded steel cargo containers. Mobile Mini’s products provide temporary storage for customers such as small businesses.
Scottsdale’s Axon (formerly TASER International) develops technology, weapons and products for the law enforcement market. Its flagship product and former namesake is Taser, a line of electroshock weapons.
Gilbert’s Wisdom Natural Brands is the leading U.S. manufacturer of stevia, a sugar substitute that has no calories. Wisdom Natural Brands is the parent company of two popular consumer brands — SweetLeaf Sweetener and Wisdom of the Ancients tea.
China Mist Tea Company of Scottsdale China Mist Tea Company produces, processes and distributes iced tea for hotels and restaurants, foodservice purveyors, grocers and coffee service operators worldwide.
The Tepa Burger is a protein substitute that is manufactured by Local Alternative Foods, which is headquartered in Flagstaff. Local Alternative creates all-natural, wholesome and vegetarian protein products that are sourced locally.
Penn Racquet Sports, which is headquartered in Phoenix, manufactures tennis balls and racquetballs. Penn Championship is the best-selling tennis ball in the U.S. and represents the standard by which all other tennis balls are measured.
La Canasta, which was started in Phoenix in 1962, manufactures more than 1.7 million tortillas daily for local and national accounts. La Canasta added My Nana’s Tortilla Chips in 1996 and they have become a best-selling snack food.
Arizona’s largest producer of award-winning wine, which earned rave reviews from the judges at the most recent Arizona Wine Competition, Arizona Stronghold Vineyards is based in Cottonwood and is credited with redefining the desert with high elevation wine.