There is lots of gloom and doom in the news around manufacturing these days. It seems that hardly a day goes by without a story about a plant closure. Yet, the reality on the ground is very different. It turns out there are lots of innovative Ontario manufacturers that are operating successfully below the radar. In a joint project for the Lawrence Centre and the Trillium Network, a team of student researchers visited a number of Ontario manufacturing ‘success’ stories this summer. Here are the students’ profiles of the firms they visited and the people they met.

 

National Research Council

Defined as the manipulation of the physical world to achieve human goals, technological innovation has been a key driver of the Canadian economy since the country’s inception. From the technologies that Indigenous peoples used to adapt to harsh environmental conditions to Canadarm2, the robotic arm used on the International Space Station, Canada has a long history of technological development and innovation…

stevensE3

Located in London Ontario, stevensE3 celebrated its 90th anniversary in 2017, offering a perfect example of how a small family business can become a globally recognized brand. Established by H.A. “Archie” Stevens in 1927 as Stevens Signs, the company first operated out of a garage on Princess Avenue, London. After great success in the London ...

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Solar Ship

Imagine being completely cut off from the modern world: no paved roads, no supermarkets, no phone service, and no Internet. These challenging circumstances represent everyday life for many communities living in Northern Canada. The lack of paved roads to this part of the country means that getting supplies to those who live and work in ...

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All or Nothing Brewhouse

Eric and Jeff Dornan—brothers and co-owners of All or Nothing Brewhouse, Trafalgar Ales, Meads & Distillery, and Black Creek Historic Brewery—are hoping to revolutionize the craft beer and spirits industry in Ontario. By overcoming challenge after challenge, the brothers have taken their business from its beginnings as an underdog in the industry to a well-established ...

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Blyth Farm Cheese

Thanks to Blyth Farm Cheese, fresh Dutch-style goat and sheep cheeses are now available to Ontarians—without the cost of a trip to Europe. This Dutch/Ontarian cheese is available thanks to the owner and head cheesemaker of Blyth Farm Cheese, Paul Van Dorp, who brought his cheese making techniques with him when he and his family ...

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Structural Panels Inc.

Structural Panels Inc. (SPI) is a Baltimore, Ontario-based manufacturer of high-quality, steel-skinned insulated sandwich panels that are ideal for walls, partitions, ceilings, and value-added projects. With its mission to provide its clients with customized products, solutions, and support for all their building needs, SPI has experienced substantial success, especially since it is the only company in ...

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