Here is today's summary of economic development news, a free service of the Economic Development Partnership of Alabama, representing Alabama's private sector investment in economic development.  If you enjoy NewsFlash, thank an EDPA Partner.


In this issue:

Alabama ag commissioner: drones, stem cells, technology the future of agriculture
Ebony Davis
Business Reporter
Feb 11, 2016

Imagine residential refrigerators that automatically inventory and order food as needed to be delivered by a drone, or meat that is developed in labs from the stem cells of livestock.

According to Alabama Agriculture and Industries Commissioner John McMillan, both possibilities could be reality in the next 15 years. McMillan mentioned the potential technological advancements and other newer-age agricultural processes during a Dothan Area Chamber of Commerce general membership luncheon on Thursday.

According to McMillan, numbers pulled in 2013 showed agribusiness in Alabama had a $70.4 billion economic impact with about 580,000 employees, which he said represented about 40 percent of Alabama's total economy.


Yancey Parker Industrial Park earns key designations
Special to The Sun | 
February 11, 2016 

Two new designations for the Yancey Parker Industrial Park in Enterprise are expected to be a "dynamic catalyst for growth."

That's the assessment of Wiregrass Economic Development Corporation Executive Director Jonathon Tullos.

"Enterprise continues to prepare our community and its sites for economic development opportunities," Tullos said. "With these designations, we have demonstrated that we are readied and aggressively seeking new and expanding businesses and industries to our community."


Chamber president to step down, Books-A-Million VP will fill in temporarily
on February 12, 2016

Shoals Chamber of Commerce President Steve Holt said Thursday he will resign Feb. 29 after 22 years of service to the organization. Barry Auchly, vice president at Books-A-Million and board member for the Chamber, will fill in for Holt until a replacement is hired.

Holt oversaw several projects during his time with the Chamber, including the Singing River Bridge on Alabama 157, the Shoal Creek Bridge on U.S. 72, Keep The Shoals Beautiful program and more. Membership also has grown from 650 to more than 1,000, while non-dues revenue has jumped by more than 200 percent.

"There have been a lot of victories and some defeats," Holt said. "But it's been a passion, and I'll miss it."


UA Students Prep to Pitch Grocery Delivery Service in Statewide Competition
Feb 12, 2016 | 

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - A team of four University of Alabama students will pitch their grocery delivery business idea in the second round of the Alabama Launchpad statewide business competition Feb. 19 in Birmingham.

Ethan Mergen, Ryan Keelin, Trey Byers and Jake Jackson will present their start-up business plan to a panel of judges in an 8-minute, live-pitch event at Evonik Industries in Birmingham. All are Birmingham natives except for Jackson who is from Wildwood, Missouri.

The four business majors at UAs Culverhouse College of Commerce teamed up to create a grocery delivery service aimed at university-centric towns. The service, dubbed Care Package, will use a smartphone application that allows students or parents to remotely shop for groceries and have them delivered to their apartment or dorm.


Join Our Mailing List