CIRAS DIGEST: Tuesday, September 1, 2015

  • cover_cinnamon_webBREAKING NEWS/BUTTER BRAID BULLETIN: We learned this morning that West Bend-based Country Maid will be featured on Manufacturing Marvels on The Fox Business Network later this month. Crews are supposed to document production of the company’s flagship Butter Braid pastries for something that will are between 8:30 to 8:44 p.m. on Sept. 22. (Click here to figure out where you can find the Fox Business Channel.)
  • Iowa Workforce Development has released its annual economic report. There’s a whole mess of numbers here, which the Newton Daily News summarized as highlighting “trends that make Iowa an attractive state for businesses that want to expand or relocate, and offers rich start-up opportunities for entrepreneurs.”
  • The Des Moines Register, citing somebody else’s poll, says Iowa farmers are spending less overall in the wake of low corn and soybean prices. They’re cutting back on equipment purchases, rent payments, fertilizer and seed.
  • And speaking of expensive, the specter of avian flu has reared its beak again, according to the Wisconsin-based site Agri-View, Iowa State University is canceling some poultry classes to minimize the chance of a flu resurgence. (Also, to protect some rare chickens used for research.)
  • For another overall review of poultry problems, see this story in the High Plains/Midwest Ag Journal.
  • ICYMI, Iowa Public Radio has an NPR story up recounting all the stuff that happened with China and the stock market last week. It’s a decent overview, and the headline says it all: “Not much fun, but it sure was interesting.”
  • Fortune has a story on MySolidWorks, an effort by Dassault Systemes to create a virtual network of 60 companies involved in various forms of prototyping. “It becomes kind of like the Yelp of manufacturing services, user-reviewed and -rated,” one company official is quoted as saying. “We’re closing the bridge to: how can I find somebody who can build something for me at the right price?”
  • The Fiscal Times has a story saying manufacturing firms may now be a target for unionization after a NLRB ruling last year that a California recycling plant essentially was a “joint employer” with the contractor that hired workers in the plant. The move may force fast food companies to go to the bargaining table alongside their franchisees. According to the story, the same goes for manufacturing firms who use temp employees or some other kind of subcontracting relationship.

Thanks for reading.

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