Above: A Toyota team member working on a six-cylinder engine final assembly line at Toyota's Buffalo, West Virginia plant, photographed during the location's 20th anniversary in 2016. Toyota West Virginia ranks among the state's largest manufacturing companies (Photo source: BusinessWire).
West Virginia has long been known for its coal mining industry, but over the past decade the state has transformed its manufacturing sector, attracting enterprises from a wide range of industries to its borders. West Virginia’s largest manufacturers are emblematic of this trend, with some big names in the automotive, food processing, defense, steel and chemical industries all calling the state home.
Today, we’re exploring the latest facts on West Virginia’s industrial sector and getting to know the state’s ten largest manufacturing companies.
According to MNI, compiler of the industrial information that powers IndustrySelect, West Virginia is currently home to 1,443 industrial companies employing 63,047 workers.
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According to MNI, Huntington is West Virginia’s largest city based on number of industrial jobs, with 4,843 workers.
Read more: Top Manufacturing Cities in the U.S.
Other top cities in West Virginia include
• Mooresfield (4,695 jobs)
• Martinsburg (2,308 jobs)
• Wheeling (2,302 jobs)
• Charleston (1,828 jobs)
Kanawha County is West Virginia’s largest in terms of industrial jobs, home to 8,089 workers. This is followed by Cabell County with 7,160 workers, Monongalia County (4,923 jobs), Wood County (3,839 jobs) and Hancock County (3,824 jobs).
The chemical and allied products industry is West Virginia’s largest in terms of employment, accounting for 13% of the state’s industrial workforce. This is followed by industrial machinery and equipment with 12% and lumber and wood products with 10%. The fabricated metal products industry account for 9% of West Virginia industrial workers, as does the primary metals industry.
MNI reports there are 5,968 executive contacts among West Virginia’s manufacturing companies, including 654 presidents, 472 owners and partners; 388 vice-presidents and 477 sales, marketing and purchasing executives.
Other facts to know about West Virginia manufacturers, based on IndustrySelect’s advanced criteria available to subscribers, include ownership, distribution and other trends. Let’s take a look:
• 1% of West Virginia manufacturers are women-owned
• 12% are publicly owned companies
• 7% import raw materials
• 17% distribute their products internationally.
These trends reveal that West Virginia is less reliant on imported materials compared to the U.S. as a whole (7% versus 11% nationally) and that the state distributes fewer of its products internationally compared to the U.S. average (17% versus 29%).
Next, we’ll take a look at the state’s top companies.
|Toyota Motor Manufacturing, West Virginia, Inc.||1,479||Buffalo||WV|
|Northrop Grumman||1,300||Rocket Center||WV|
|Constellium Rolled Products Ravenswood, LLC||1,100||Ravenswood||WV|
|DuPont de Nemours, Inc.||1,100||Washington||WV|
|Alcon Research, Ltd.||900||Huntington||WV|
|ArcelorMittal Weirton, Inc.||900||Weirton||WV|
|American Woodmark Corp.||800||Moorefield||WV|
1. Viatris, Inc, (Morgantown, WV)
Employing 2,600 West Virginians, Viatris, Inc. is the state’s largest industrial employer. With annual sales of $5.1 billion, Viatris is a major manufacturer of generic pharmaceuticals. The company occupies a 1.3 million square foot facility in Morgantown and distributes its products internationally.
2. Pilgrim’s Corp (Mooresfield, WV)
Ranking second in the state for number of industrial jobs is Pilgrim’s Corp in Mooresfield. Pilgrim’s is a major poultry processing company, majority-owned by JBS and employing 35,000 workers worldwide. The company started out as as a Texas feed store founded in 1946 by Lonnie “Bo” Pilgrim, who added free chicks to the bags of feed they sold. The Mooresville location occupies a 222,000 square foot facility and employs 2,000.
3. Toyota Motor Manufacturing, West Virginia, Inc. (Buffalo, WV)
Employing 1,479 workers in Buffalo, this Toyota location produces automotive engines and transmissions at a 1.9 million square foot facility.
4. Northrop Grumman (Rocket Center, WV)
Rocket Center is the focal point for global aerospace and defense company Northrop Grumman, which operates the Naval Sea Systems Command on this sprawling site. Employing 1,300, the company produces tactical rocket motors and warheads, including composite structures, metals and munitions.
5. Constellium Rolled Products Ravenswood, LLC (Ravenswood, WV)
Employing 1,100 in the town of Ravenswood, Constellium Rolled Products is an international provider of aluminum flat-rolled coil, sheet and plate products. Established in 1957, this location is housed in a 2.7 million square foot facility.
6. DuPont de Nemours, Inc. (Washington, WV)
Employing 1,100 employees in Washington, DuPont de Nemours is a major producer of nylon filament, producing 700 million pounds per year of materials, including Teflon, Butacite, Dymetrol and more. The company distributes its products internationally and was established in 1948.
7. Alcon Research, Ltd. (Huntington, WV)
A manufacturer of intraocular lenses, Alcon Research, Ltd. is a major West Virginia employer, employing 900 in Huntington. The company occupies a 150,000 square-foot facility and was established in 1978.
8. ArcelorMittal Weirton, Inc. (Weirton, WV)
Established in 2004, this ArcelorMittal location in Weirton employs 900 and produces flat-rolled tin plate
9. Quad (Martinsburg, WV)
Employing 900 in Martinsburg, Quad is a major printing company, specializing in softcover catalog and magazine printing.
10. American Woodmark Corp. (Moorefield, WV)
Rounding out our top ten list is American Woodmark, a manufacturer of wooden kitchen cabinets. The company employs 800 in the town of Moorefield and distributes its products nationally.
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Editor's Note: This article was originally published in August of 2021. It is updated annually to reflect new statistics and trends in West Virginia's manufacturing sector.