BEATRICE – A Beatrice manufacturer is one of two companies honored by a state business organization. Exmark Manufacturing of Beatrice and Garner Industries of Lincoln have been named Nebraska’s manufacturers of the year by the Nebraska Chamber of Commerce & Industry. The companies were honored Thursday, at the State Chamber’s Manufacturing and Distribution Executive Summit held at the CenturyLink Center in Omaha.
Exmark Manufacturing received the award for larger manufacturers, while Garner Industries received the award for mid-sized manufacturers.
Exmark manufactures commercial lawn and turf equipment, and is a division of the Toro Company, based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Exmark was incorporated in May 1982 as an independent manufacturer of professional turf care equipment.
The company’s product line has expanded rapidly in recent years to include spreader-sprayers, slicer seeders and aerators. Exmark employs more than 500 employees at its Beatrice facility in the Gage County Industrial Park.
Garner Industries has a 64-year history. The company was established in 1953 as a small tool and die company in the Havelock area. In the mid-1960s, the company embarked on development of an automated grain bin level monitoring system, which gave birth to the BinMaster line of level control technologies. In 1992, the company entered the plastic injection molding and mold-building business and now employs more than 130 individuals.
Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts presented the awards to representatives of both companies. Barry Kennedy, president of the Nebraska Chamber says both companies are innovation leaders in Nebraska’s manufacturing sector.
Nebraska is home to approximately 1,600 manufacturers, who employ nearly 100,000 Nebraska workers. Manufacturing contributes almost $14 billion annually to Nebraska’s total economic output.