Senator Stabenow Tours Businesses in West Michigan

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow toured businesses in Holland and Grand Haven as part of her business tour across the state. During her visit to West Michigan, Stabenow toured the Kraft Heinz Company’s Holland facility, antenna systems manufacturer RAMI (R.A. Miller Industries Inc.), and boating manufacturer Tiara Yachts. Stabenow’s tour has also included business stops in Muskegon, the Upper Peninsula and Northern Michigan.

“We do not have an economy in Michigan or a middle class unless we make things and grow things and that is what our entrepreneurs do every day,” said Senator Stabenow. “It’s inspiring to see first-hand the work ethic, innovation, and resilience of workers and businesses here in West Michigan.”

“We were pleased to host Senator Stabenow at our Holland plant today, and update her on our plans to move all of our Grey Poupon production to this facility, as part of a $17 million investment,” said Michael Mullen, SVP of Corporate & Government Affairs for the Kraft Heinz Company. “Operating in this location since 1897, Kraft Heinz continues to be proud to be part of this Western Michigan community.”

“We appreciate Senator Stabenow taking the time to visit RAMI during her business tour,” said Michael Voevodsky, CEO of RAMI Group. “It was an ideal opportunity to show her the mission critical antenna systems we design, manufacture and supply to the U.S. military, heavy transportation, and aviation industries.”

“It’s so important when constituents can spend the time to show our Senator the manufacturing floor, show her the jobs we are creating, and explain the challenges we face,” said David Slikkers, Director of Government Affairs for Tiara Yachts. “Senator Stabenow is a strong supporter of manufacturing, knows the importance of manufacturing, and simply gets it.”

Michigan’s food-processing businesses generate nearly $25 billion in economic activity and employ more than 130,000 residents. Earlier this year, Kraft Heinz announced that Grey Poupon would be produced in Michigan, a project that would create 50 jobs in Holland and generate $17.2 million in private investment.

Michigan’s defense industry supports over 100,000 jobs and has an economic impact of $9 billion ($2.4 billion in defense contracts). RAMI is a world class supplier of advanced antenna systems and accessories to military, aviation, and transportation customers worldwide.  RAMI has been engineering and manufacturing antenna systems for the United States military since 1956.

According to the Michigan Boating Industry Association, Michigan is the third largest marine market in the county, with businesses supporting over 40,000 jobs and contributing $7.4 billion to the state’s economy each year. Tiara Yachts is a family owned business that started building sailboats in 1974 and is now manufacturing powerboats.