Businesses in Glasgow, KY
A central location halfway between Louisville and Nashville, Tenn., and a strong economy that comprises agriculture, food production and automotive manufacturing make Glasgow a top spot for business.
Barren County Agriculture
Barren County's rolling countryside and wide-open spaces have made it a prime spot for agriculture, and despite its nickname "the Barrens," it is full of rich, fertile farmland. The county is the state's top producer of beef and dairy cattle, alfalfa hay, soybeans and burley tobacco, and its agricultural way of life earned it the Best Place to Live in Rural America distinction from The Progressive Farmer magazine in 2007.
The Barren County Cooperative Extension Service provides educational opportunities for area farmers to learn the newest methods in agriculture, helping them stay on top of their game. Several Barren County producers also incorporate agritourism into their operations, inviting visitors to tour their farms and learn about their products. Kenny's Farmhouse Cheese, for example, hosts school groups and tourists at its Austin farm and demonstrates how cheese is made.
Bluegrass Dairy & Food
Bluegrass Dairy & Food LLC employs about 100 workers in Glasgow, and the company makes five varieties of cheese – cheddar, Monterey Jack, Colby, Parmesan and Romano – which are sent to its Springfield plant to be converted into cheese powders. Major snack food manufacturers use the cheese powders to flavor products such as chips, crackers, croutons and popcorn.
Bluegrass Dairy & Food also manufactures nonfat dry milk for use in groceries, bakeries and ice cream, as well as ice cream blends for soft-serve operations.
Glasgow Automotive Manufacturing
A number of manufacturers cater to the automotive industry, which employs more than 1,700 people in Barren County. Akebono Brake Corp. in Glasgow makes vehicle brake systems and employs more than 600 workers. ACK Controls Inc. manufactures automotive control cables and has about 320 employees. Nemak Kentucky produces engine and transmission components with its 430 employees, and Dana Holding Corp. makes heavy-duty truck axles and brakes, employing more than 400 workers.
RR Donnelley is another big contributor to the local economy. The company provides offset printing, computer typesetting, saddle stitch and perfect binding services for publishers and employs about 1,100 people at its Glasgow location.
Glasgow's historic downtown has seen lots of positive changes in recent years, thanks in part to the community's commitment to preservation. A committee of citizens helped raise money and organize the restoration of the historic Plaza Theatre, making it into a major downtown attraction. Several community leaders and businesses have applied for facade grants to help shops in the historic district with building upkeep.
In recent years, new lights and a new clock were installed downtown to fit the city's character, and murals are being painted on the backsides of buildings. The city has also worked on a streetscape project to improve sidewalks, curbs, gutters and landscaping downtown.
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