Gov. Kay Ivey, in partnership with the Alabama Department of Commerce, honored a dozen homegrown businesses recently at the inaugural “Made in Alabama” Showcase.
To celebrate October as “Manufacturing Month,” Ivey selected 12 businesses for their work in producing exceptional Alabama-made products and invited them to exhibit their products at the state Capitol.
“It is an honor to welcome these manufacturers to the Alabama Capitol to showcase their fine, Alabama-made products,” Ivey said. “Alabama is home to some wonderful companies, and it’s a pleasure to give them the acknowledgement they deserve.”
The 12 exhibitors – nominated by the Business Council of Alabama, Chamber of Commerce Association of Alabama and Manufacture Alabama – showed off their products and displayed promotional items during the event.
The showcase was inspired by the Commerce Department’s long-running “Made in Alabama” campaign.
“The ‘Made in Alabama’ badge stands for quality, and it’s clear that the homegrown companies being honored in this showcase today have mastered the art of turning out a wide variety of world-class products,” said Greg Canfield, secretary of the Alabama Department of Commerce.
“I’m constantly impressed by the ingenuity and capabilities of our business sector, which is paving the way for a more prosperous future for the state.”
Companies participating in the Made in Alabama Showcase were:
- Monroe Sausage (Beatrice), which became a household name in Monroe County in the late 1940s when its sausage biscuits were thrown from a float during the annual Monroeville Hog Festival. Today, its Hickory Smoked Monroe Sausage can be found in most grocery stores.
- Vulcan Inc.(Foley), an employee-owned sign manufacturer that has been growing for more than 80 years. It produces aluminum coils and sheet for the automotive, construction and other markets, as well as finished traffic signs for customers throughout the state.
- Dean’s Cake House (Andalusia), founded in 1994 by Dean Jacobs at age 60. She and her staff bake more than 300 cakes per day, and the products are distributed throughout the South. The bakery has become a tourist attraction with visitors coming from all over the country.
- John Emerald Distilling
(Opelika), a small-batch craft distillery in downtown Opelika making spirits distributed throughout Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi, Tennessee, Florida, New York, California, Colorado and Illinois. The distillery is named for John Emerald Sharp, one of three brothers who ventured from Scotland to the U.S.
- Showa Glove (Fayette), which created the market for single-use nitrile gloves, an alternative to latex gloves. Just before the pandemic hit in 2020, Showa launched an expansion to triple production in Fayette, where it has been increasing its workforce.
- SouthFresh Feeds (Demopolis and Tuscaloosa), which manufactures animal feed for fish, cattle, deer and horses, employing more than 30 people. The company has been in business since 1992.
- Kith Kitchens (Haleyville), which began in 1998 as a family-owned business that today has 710 employees and more than 175,000 completed projects. Kith Kitchens is a leading provider in the kitchen, bath and office cabinetry industry.
- Zone Protects (Decatur), which got its start when founder Brian Baer saw his friend’s family dog wreaking havoc in their flowerbeds. He worked to create a safe, effective and all-natural animal repellent that became Zone No Holes. The company sells insect repellents, disinfectants and sanitizers.
- Eleven86 Water (Autaugaville), which comes from an aquifer in Autauga County where the water has been protected from surface contaminants and pollutants.
- Alabama Sawyer (Birmingham), which designs and produces modern, environmentally sustainable products from fallen trees. Founders Cliff and Leigh Spencer have diverted hundreds of logs from landfills by transforming them into award-winning furniture and products for homes and businesses.
- American Cast Iron Pipe Co. (Birmingham), which manufactures ductile iron and steel pipe that safely delivers water to homes across the U.S. ACIPCO gives back to the community through neighborhood gardens, charity walk/runs and teaching students about entrepreneurship.
- Henry Brick Co. (Selma), which uses the rich clay of central Alabama to produce brick of beauty and quality. For more than 65 years, family-owned Henry Brick has defined the brickmaker’s art, and its product line is renowned throughout much of the U.S.
This story originally appeared on the Alabama Department of Commerce’s Made in Alabama website.