- Chicago is a hub for both food processing and TDL, with over 1200 food manufacturing companies operating in Chicago.
- The Chicago region has been the center for food production, warehousing, and distribution since the 1800s.
- 72,000 of the nation’s top farms cover nearly 76% of Illinois’ land area Illinois farms are top producers of corn, soybeans, livestock, dairy and poultry.
- Chicago’s employment for food and beverage manufacturing is the top in the US at over 55,000.
- Chicago has the largest food and beverage manufacturing economy by output at $7.225B.
- Illinois ranks #1 in the U.S. with $180B in processed food sales.
- Illinois has over 2600 food manufacturing companies.
- Q2 2020 represents the 40th consecutive quarter of positive net absorption for Chicago’s industrial market, recording just over 6.2 million sq. ft. year-to-date, with over 3.4 million sq. ft. of construction completed that quarter.
- Chicago is the third largest intermodal system globally, benefiting from 200 million consumers within a 500-mile radius and 30% of North American consumers within a one-day truck drive.
- Chicago is the nation’s rail hub, with six of the seven Class I railroads operating major terminals, which is the only U.S. gateway where these Class I railroads can interchange traffic.
- O’Hare is the nation’s second largest port by value, with 6.2% of all US trade.
- At over 1.2 billion sq ft, Chicago has the largest industrial market in the US by square feet with over 1/3 more inventory than the next largest market (LA).
- Nationwide, University of IL-Urbana Champaign has the highest number of graduates in food science and technology nationwide and Illinois produces the second highest number of food science graduates in the US.
- There are 10,800 food scientists or food manufacturing technicians employed in the Chicago-area.
- Chicago has the highest number of food machine operators and batchmakers in the nation.
- UIUC is ranked in the top 5 schools in the US for Food Science Technology.
- The City Colleges of Chicago Apprenticeship Program offers technical instruction for both a Basic Certificate and Advanced Certificate in Factory Automation, as well as an Associate in Applied Science for Manufacturing Technology.
- The Chicago area has 32 commercially licensed, shared-use kitchen spaces (commissary kitchens) available for use by food entrepreneurs.
- Chicago food and beverage startups have raised a total of $745.1M in funding, with 16% of food tech startups acquired, one of the top acquisition rates in the nation.
- Companies in Illinois spent $773M on food R&D in 2017, the second highest amount nation-wide.
- Chicago is home to the Hatchery, a 67,00 sq ft food and beverage incubator dedicated to helping local entrepreneurs build & grow successful businesses.
- Chicago has 25% greater density in food and ag startups vs. the national average.
- Agriculture is growing in the state with $3.2B invested in AgTech in Illinois in 2016.
- 30% of venture capital funds in Illinois was invested in food companies.
|Wm. Wrigley Jr. Company||2759|
|Mondelez International, Inc.||2,000|
|The Tootsie Roll Company Inc||1,650|
|Rich Products Corporation||750|
|Earthgrains Refrigerated Dough Products, Inc.||700|
|Nation Pizza Products, L.P.||700|
|Mars Chocolate North America, LLC||590|
|Rose Packing Company, Inc.||530|
|The Hillshire Brands Company||517|
|General Mills, Inc.||500|
|Nestle Prepared Foods Company||495|
|Hearthside Usa, LLC||434|
|Mullins Food Products, Inc.||405|
|Kraft Heinz Foods Company||400|