Made in America

Will an uptick in manufacturing plants lead to more B&I foodservice locations?

The cover story for the April 22 issue of Time was about the rebounding manufacturing industry in the United States. Companies like Apple, Dow Chemical and JetBlue are opening new plants in the U.S., and manufacturing is one industry that has actually created jobs during the recession.

Nine percent of the U.S. workforce—12 million people—is directly employed in manufacturing, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Here’s what Time had to say:

“Climbing out of the recession, the U.S. has seen its manufacturing growth outpace that of other advanced nations, with some 500,000 jobs created in the past three years. It marks the first time in more than a decade that the number of factory jobs had gone up instead of down.”

The question I couldn’t help but ask was: Will that growth translate to more B&I foodservice operations?

I’d like to think so. Many of these manufacturing plants aren’t located in areas that are teeming with options where employees can dine. That food desert lends itself quite nicely to an in-house run foodservice operation.

B&I foodservice shouldn’t be options for only those Silicon Valley businesses—think Facebook and Google. There’s an opportunity to provide a service to employees—and make money for the client company—in manufacturing plants as well. Let’s hope companies are smart enough to see the value.