Stanislaus State releases business forecast for SJ Valley

November 29, 2017

 

California State University, Stanislaus has published its San Joaquin Valley Business Forecast Report. The report, now in its eighth year, highlights the economy of the valley from San Joaquin County down to Kern County.

Highlights of the report, which can be downloaded in its entirety from csustan.edu/sjvbfr, include reviews of employment, the housing market, inflation and banking.

Professor Gökçe Soydemir of Business Economics at Stan State focused on employment, writing that it continues to slow significantly, which shows signs of a plateau.

The growth rate for employment in 2017 was only 0.52 percent, according to Soydemir. If there continues to be a drop in the growth in the coming year, that could mean a decline in total employment since the recession almost 10 years ago.

Much of the outcome will depend entirely on politics and the possible tax reform.

The reports that Stanislaus County had a 1.94 percent employment growth rate, while Madera County had 1.15 percent growth, Fresno County had 0.93 percent growth, San Joaquin County had 0.38 percent growth. Merced County’s employment grew by 0.51 percent for the year and Tulare County grew by 0.64 percent.

Employment declined in Kern and Kings counties by 0.60 and 1.19 percent, respectively.

The report shows construction being the biggest industry with employment increases, due to the resurgence of housing and commercial development throughout the valley.

Average home prices throughout the Central Valley grew by 7.82 percent during 2017, however, the report states that rate of growth should slow over the course of the next few months.

 

Stanislaus State releases business forecast for SJ Valley

Move over Silicon Valley — Stanislaus County becoming development hub

November 28, 2017

 

Bay Area companies recruiting for tech talent should keep an eye on Modesto and Stanislaus County. Long-time residents of the Central Valley are aware that many of our new friends and neighbors are known as BATs (Bay Area transplants). Perhaps a little less well-known is the fact that some of these new residents have brought a wealth of tech know-how and experience to the county.

Now these techies are beginning to positively impact local companies and draw high-paying tech employers into the county.

Central Valley companies like E&J Gallo, Foster Farms and Hilmar Cheese that already employ hundreds of software programmers, now have a larger, more experienced tech talent pool to recruit from.

And that tech talent pool isn’t just growing in size, it has also been rapidly broadening its experience and capabilities with cutting edge tools. Gallo leverages a variety of technologies including Java, PHP and SQL. Save Mart uses Ruby on Rails, Java, and SQL for their software solutions. And many other local software teams are building projects with those as well as Angular.io, Angular.js, React.js, Node.js, PHP, .Net, Python and C++.

County employers pulling in more tech workers
In addition to these multi-generational businesses, many newer employers are also pulling software developers into the area.

Geostrategies, a leading market analysis and investment-grade mapping technology company based in Turlock, creates software to help private equity clients and brands uncover significant opportunities to grow revenue.

Robert Half, a Fortune 500 staffing firm, has been steadily growing its technology practice in the Sacramento, Stockton and Modesto areas for decades as well.

American Medical Response, which manages ambulance and emergency services throughout much of the country, has been growing their software development capabilities in the Salida/Modesto area for a decade now. Novo Technologies, a custom software company, already employs many developers in their Stanislaus County office, and is continuing to expand rapidly.

Recently, Novo joined Robert Half and Geostrategies to sponsor the Valley Hackathon (valleyhackathon.com), a local programming contest that has drawn hundreds of programmers to its Central Valley events.

MedicAlert helps millions of Americans through its medical IDs and services employs scores of software developers in its Salida office.

Save Mart, whose markets serves millions of Central Valley residents, also employs many developers to facilitate its expansion and acquisitions.

Other organizations such as the Turlock and Modesto Irrigation Districts and even Stanislaus County itself are significant employers of software programmers, drawing additional tech talent into the region.

Oportun, a relative newcomer to Stanislaus County, whose growth has been fueled by over $200 million in venture funding and tremendous market acceptance, has opened a new and fast-growing software development office in Downtown Modesto.

Local web and software development agencies have also been growing. Agencies such as Stickman Ventures, Inventaweb.net, Gerbo Design, MHD and Never Boring add significant software as well as digital design capabilities to Stanislaus County.

And neighboring San Joaquin County companies such as Petz Enterprises, The Wine Group and Delicato Family Vineyards are also contributing to the growth of local software community as they continue to expand their software development initiatives.

Local companies are even beginning to collaborate with Bay Area firms such as Trinity Brand Group (creative branding and packaging design), Conversant (digital media) and Traackr (influencer marketing platform) to expand opportunities on both sides of the Altamont Pass.

More growth on its way—training even more local tech workers
In addition to employer-driven tech growth, the local software community has begun to organize itself to improve collaboration and help industry veterans and newcomers alike accelerate their learning curves. Valley Hackathon continues to grow their events in Modesto drawing in hundreds and has now expanded to Stockton and Sonora as well.

FreeCodeCamp and Valley Software Developers Meetup combined forces in October at Modesto’s newly-opened tech co-working space, ValleyWorx (valleyworx.com) to help experienced and new programmers grow their skills. The meeting drew 3 times more attendees than expected and was larger than many software meetups in the Bay Area.

According to John Bull, lead organizer for the Modesto FreeCodeCamp, Stanislaus County already has 1,000 software developers working here.

Next month, Bay Valley Tech (bayvalleytech.com) will be launching coding classes as well as video game coding camps to rapidly expand the local talent pool. Software development classes and one-day camps will be held in Modesto, Stockton and Livermore. Tech community leaders are excited about Bay Valley Tech’s potential impact for the region, since Fresno’s Geekwise code academy has already trained over 7,000 programmers over the last few years.

Modesto and Stanislaus County officials are very excited about the prospect of developing a local self-sustaining tech ecosystem and are evaluating ways to support the community and accelerate the ongoing momentum.

A win-win-win
Stanislaus County tech talent growth is the key to attracting more Bay Area tech firms to the region, which will create a WIN-WIN-WIN for Central Valley residents looking for higher paying jobs, Bay Area companies looking for a growing tech workforce and tech workers looking for affordable housing.

Move over Silicon Valley — Stanislaus County becoming development hub

After years of luring, Bakersfield finally lands Bass Pro Shop in town

  • BY HAROLD PIERCE

One decade after Bass Pro Shops announced its intention to build a store in Bakersfield — a plan that has been marked with uncertainty amid economic downturn — the outdoor retail giant announced Wednesday that it would build its fifth California location in Kern County.

The Missouri-based outdoor retailer, which specializes in hunting, fishing and camping gear, will open a 100,000-square-foot store to anchor an 800,000-square-foot mixed-retail center at the northeast corner of Hosking Avenue and Highway 99 known as the Bakersfield Gateway.

It will be the retailer’s only store between Manteca and Rancho Cucamonga.

“We are very excited to be the lead anchor tenant for this innovative new development that is sure to have such a positive impac

t on Bakersfield, one of the fastest-growing cities in the United States,” Bass Pro Shops founder and CEO Johnny Morris said in a prepared statement. “Our store will be a tribute to the great sporting tradition and heritage of the region and a celebration of the sporting men and women of California.”

No timeline or estimated date for when the store would open has been released.

Stephen Coslik, chairman of The Woodmont Company, the Texas-based developer planning the project, said he

’s now confident the Bakersfield Gateway would be a success, crediting Bass Pro Shops’ “incredible draw.”

Beyond anchoring the anticipated development, Bass Pro Shops could boost the local economy. It anticipates hiring between 250 and 300 employees, many of whom will be locals.

Bass Pro Shops announced its intention to open a 150,000-square-foot store in Bakersfield first in 2007 at the Bakersfield Gateway site, but the recession sidelined the project.

“The project never materialized,” company communications manager Katie Mitchell told The Californian in 2014.

Bass Pro Shops never pulled out of the deal, which some considered critical to the success of the 93-acre development, said Bakersfield Community Development Director Jacqui Kitchen, adding, “it was just a long and extended negotiation.”

“With all the changes the retail sector has seen in the last several years, I think Bass Pro took some time to reflect on their overall development plans nationwide, but ultimately they realized this is a great opportunity they had within the city of Bakersfield,” Kitchen said. “It’s something we’ve all known is coming the last several years, and we’re very happy they’ve moved ahead with their (announcement).”

Although plans have not yet been finalized, Bass Pro Shop officials said in a press release that the Bakersfield location would include a gift and nature center featuring a variety of outdoor related items “from lamps and dishes to bird feeders and furniture.” It would also include an expansive boat showroom offering Tracker, Nitro, Suntracker, Tahoe and Mako boats built by White River Marine Group.

Bakersfield planning and development officials have been working for the last five years to woo the retail giant to town, Kitchen said. Once the retailer gets site plans approved through the planning commission and applies for building permits, the city plans to help Bass Pro coast through the process, Kitchen added.

“The city is ready and willing to help them get through all the permitting process and make sure there’s as little red tape as possible,” Kitchen said.

Most exciting about the deal, Kitchen said, was the size of the store.

At 100,000-square-feet, it’s not the largest tier store Bass Pro Shops constructs, but it is larger than what’s been rumored, Kitchen said.

“We wanted to make sure Bakersfield residents get the best available amenity,” Kitchen said. “It seems Bass Pro is seeking to do just that.”

http://www.bakersfield.com/news/business/after-years-of-luring-bakersfield-finally-bass-pro-shop-to/article_f621db36-ca63-11e7-b862-f3c2a14f69c5.html

 

New Construction Boosts Visalia Industrial Park

With virtually no vacant space in the Visalia Industrial Park a spurt of new construction is underway that will make room for both new tenants, local company expansions and relocations in coming months.

If there are few empty buildings to lease, Visalia sports about 1,000 acres of land “zoned and ready to go,” according to Visalia economic development  manager staffer Devon Jones.

Developers looking to encourage companies who might want a location in the Central Valley are building several concrete tilt-up “spec buildings” in Visalia that can be ready for tenant improvements and occupancy in a matter of weeks.

Making new projects feasible, the city has a streamlined permitting process and lots are hooked up to sewer and water. In addition there has been a $130 million investment in roads over the past few years with easy access to Hwy 99 and the rest of California.

We are talking ’speedy delivery’ – not just for goods but for new buildings that will house future distribution and manufacturing hubs.

Visalia’s mid-state location makes it attractive for ground shipping of goods to the Western US, enabling parcels to arrive in one-day to many locations.

Hub Central
None other than United Parcel Service appears to be convinced, having invested in the purchase of 58 acres north Riggin at Plaza  earlier this summer. Sources says UPS plans a phased development to start with – a modular sorting center to replace its current small distribution center on Goshen Ave. Then, a 400,000 permanent complex will be next for UPS – said to be the big company’s future main hub in the Central Valley. Growth around its Fresno facility has boxed them in say real estate sources. Visalia’s ample industrial acreage is apparently the answer.

The land is the first parcel to sell in the Central Valley Logistics Center industrial park on the northwest corner of Plaza and Riggin since it was zoned for development a decade ago.

Screen Shot 2017-11-09 at 12.34.57 PM

 

Another big shipper is making Visalia its hub. Golden State Overnight (GSO) now owned by Britain’s Royal Mail, is building a 63,000sf distribution center at a cost of $2.3 million right now.Royal Mail bought GSO last year for $90 million.

 “If Memphis is the biggest hub for FedEx and Louisville is the main UPS hub  – Visalia is our most important hub for the future” says GSO’s McKinley.

The company has a smaller facility it leases now that has truck docks only on one side, says company VP Bob McKinley. The complex being built by Visalia based American Inc will offer triple the number of cargo doors on both sides with full automation on the conveyor system, he says.

The GSO hub will employ about 70 when it opens and likely double that in some years expects McKinley.

“If Memphis is a the biggest hub for FedEx and Louisville is the main UPS hub  – Visalia is our most important hub for the future” says GSO’s McKinley.

Speedy Construction

Perhaps the most active developer who has long recognized the need to offer new industrial space in Visalia ahead of demand  – is John Brelsford of Fresno who owns Diversified Development Group.

Last summer Brelsford broke ground on a fast-track construction project to build 3 clustered industrial buildings in a matter of weeks along Riggin near VF Corp, completing them – a total of 403,000sf – by late October of this year.

Commuters passing by each morning last month marveled at the rapid progress on construction each day.

Screen Shot 2017-11-09 at 12.39.53 PM

While Mr Brelsford says he can’t reveal prospective tenants he is working with International Paper, who a has major paper cup manufacturing plant here, will use the most northerly building, a 140,000sf space according to the City of Visalia who received tenant improvement plans in recent days.

“They are about ready to move in” says city planner Jason Huckleberry.

A second space is close to being filled as well says Mr Brelsford.

Next Phase Coming 

Because interest has been so brisk Brelsford is not waiting to build more “spec” space. He says he expects to build about 800,000sf beginning next March on 33 acres he owns on the southeast corner of Plaza and Riggin, a few blocks from his other project.

Last year Brelsford acquired another big parcel at Plaza and Riggin – 150 acres from Doe family – now fully entitled and in the city limits at the northwest corner of this same key intersection.The spot is just 1.5 miles from the new Betty Drive interchange on Hwy 99 that is expected to be complete in a few months.

If newcomers make the news, expansion of existing industrial park tenants are the bread and butter of Visalia’s economy.

While some worry that many new distribution companies looking here take larger spaces of source but actually have few employees. But some are both big on their space needs and offer lots of jobs

Consider VF Corp, the international clothing maker, who has a million square foot distribution center on Plaza Drive. VF, maker of Wrangler, Lee Jeans and NorthFace outdoor clothing, employs up to 1,100 people and most of them live within a 10-15-mile radius from the facility says the company.VF has recently completed a $3 million upgrade to their facility and plans more in 2018.

Another industrial park tenant that continues to grow larger is Perfection Pet Foods, a division of  Western Milling, based in Goshen. The pet food maker is building a $6.2 million office and warehouse right now. Owner Kevin Kruse says they are replacing a 100,000sf warehouse a few miles away.”We wont have to move our products across town” from their manufacturing plant, he figures. The new warehouse will house products ready to ship to Walmart and other large customers. Perfection Pet Foods employs about 120  at their growing campus of buildings in the northwest part of the industrial park.

As interest in new buildings grow, the vacated space makes room for others who will likely gobble up this 100,000sf left by the pet food company, for example.

Meanwhile smaller players like local developer Danny Freitas says his various Visalia industrial park spaces are all spoken for and he will now build two new 40,000sf “spec” warehouses for lease, one on Kelsey and one on Sunnyview.

Also in the industrial park, Servall, the big appliance parts and repair company says they will open their new sales and distribution center in Visalia in December 2017 at 2247 N. Plaza Dr., Suite D, in am existing 35,000 sf building – one of the few vacant spots in the Mid-State 99 complex.

The company cited their ability to do one-day shipping of appliance parts to consumers and businesses throughout all of California.The business will employ 20.

Speedy Delivery 

 

Plastics manufacturer will bring 120 jobs to Dinuba

Arkansas-based Delta Plastics has announced plans to build a new manufacturing facility in the Tulare County town of Dinuba. Photo via Delta Plastics website

published on November 2, 2017 – 1:33 PM

Written by David Castellon

 

The world’s leading manufacturer of irrigation polytube for the agricultural industry has chosen land north of Dinuba as the location for its new manufacturing plant.

“Tulare County was chosen after an extensive search throughout California for the best location for their venture,” according to a press release issued today by the Economic Development Corp. of Tulare County.

The agency reports that Arkansas-based Delta Plastics plans to build a 75,000-square-foot manufacturing plant in an industrial park off Road 68 in the area of Avenue 430 and employ up to 120 people there.

EDC President Paul Saldana said, “120 manufacturing jobs are pretty significant,” adding that he sees a lot of opportunity for Delta plastics to grow its operation in the coming years.

The new plant, operating under Delta’s Revolution Plastics division, will produce polytubes — hollow, high-grade plastic tubes that can be rolled out into fields and have holes punched into them to insert water emitters. The tubes are filled with water and expand, much like a fire hose, except the water shoots out of the emitters, irrigating nearby crops.

The plant also will produce Revolution Bag trash can liners made from recycled polytube material and other plastics that the company plans to collect from agricultural operations throughout the state to process at the Dinuba plant.

Delta Plastics officials couldn’t be reached immediately for comment, but a video on its website states that a portion of the recycled plastics are sold to other manufacturing businesses.

Delta currently has two manufacturing plants in Little Rock, Arkansas and Mesquite, Texas, along with a recycling plant in Stuttgart, Arkansas.

“We look forward to our growth and partnering with the agriculture industry in California as we expand our commitment to waste diversion and recycling throughout the state,” Louis Vasquez, Delta Plastic’s director of corporate development, said in a press release.

“We are excited about Revolution Plastics coming to the Dinuba area and look forward to having their employees live, shop and dine in our community,” Dinuba Mayor Scott Harness said in the same release.

Saldana said EDC representatives spent a long time showing Delta officials developed and undeveloped sites in Tulare County, and he believes that variety of available space helped sway the company to choose the Dinuba area, along with its central location in the state.

Plastics manufacturer will bring 120 jobs to Dinuba

 

Manufacturing company expands to Tulare County

DINUBA 
November 2, 2017 10:52am

 

•  Makes irrigation tubing for agriculture

•  “Partnering with the agriculture industry in California as we expand our commitment to waste diversion and recycling”


Delta Plastics of Little Rock, Arkansas, which makes irrigation polytube for the agriculture industry, is locating its new venture, Revolution Plastics, in Tulare County.

According to Louis Vasquez, the company’s director of corporate development, Tulare County was chosen after an extensive search throughout California for the best location for their venture.

“The Tulare County Economic Development Corporation was instrumental in assisting us in identifying sites, providing needed information and connecting us with local contacts that assisted us in our site search,” he says.

Revolution Plastics is expected to eventually employ 120 people and will make products from recycled California-sourced ag plastics.

“We are excited about Revolution Plastics coming to the Dinuba area and look forward to having their employees live, shop and dine in our community,” says Dinuba Mayor Scott Harness. The facility will be located just north of the Dinuba city limits and will include the construction of a 75,000-square foot building.

Delta Plastics operates manufacturing facilities in Little Rock and in Mesquite, Texas. The facilities make the company’s signature polytube products, Revolution Bag can liners and other construction and ag films, which will be produced at the new California facility. Delta also operates a recycling facility in Stuttgart, Arkansas, which has diverted over 1.2 billion pounds of waste material from landfills since 1998.

“We look forward to our growth and partnering with the agriculture industry in California as we expand our commitment to waste diversion and recycling throughout the state” says Mr. Vasquez.

http://www.centralvalleybusinesstimes.com/stories/001/?ID=33573

Supply-chain management company offers fulfillment center capabilities

LATHROP—Many smaller companies need the capabilities of a large-scale fulfillment distribution center, but don’t have the space or capital of Amazon or other mega-shippers. Many supply-chain management companies help with business conundrum.

One company with local centers just might have the ecommerce solution for many valley businesses without resources.

Dearborn, Michigan-based Hollingsworth is an end-to-end supply chain management company with 28 distribution facilities located throughout the U.S. and two such locations in Tracy and Lathrop.

In 1991, Hollingsworth began by shipping parts for the Ford Motor Company, a relationship that continues to this day. They are the primary packager for the automotive giant.

By taking on multiple clients, Hollingsworth is able to parse out warehouse space, bringing shipping costs down.

“In the Lathrop area we are very much focused on ecommerce and retail and direct-to-consumer,” said Brian Sheehan, sales and marketing manager for Hollingsworth in this region. “We have local companies and companies that are overseas. It depends on the port of entry for their goods.”

Sheehan said many of their customers are manufacturers, and multiple facilities may be used for one client. Increased facilities also helps Hollingsworth offer same day shipping on behalf of its clients to most areas.

“In a shared warehouse, there’s shared costs,” Sheehan said, allowing for the cost savings to be passed onto the client.

Hollingsworth offers solutions to warehousing, fulfillment, packaging, inventory and program management and more, allowing those who use their services to scale their businesses easily without the hassle of dealing with expansion costs.

With the holiday season estimated to be the peak time for sales, Hollingsworth is preparing for the increased traffic. It’s estimated that the holiday rush accounts for 30 percent of annual sales for many retailers.

Alphabet’s Waymo Is Using A Castle In Its Bid To Become Self-Driving Car King

Less than a year since Google’s Self-Driving Car project became Waymo, the company is close to commercializing its extensive R&D. The Alphabet Inc. unit this week showed off how it’s fine-tuning sensors and software on faux city streets at a secret complex in a sleepy agricultural section of California to achieve that goal.

Known as the Castle, a nod to its former life as Castle Air Force Base, the Atwater, California, facility is where Waymo technicians since 2012 have safely created what they call “spicey” scenarios – complex interactions with other cars, pedestrians and bicyclists to help its robotic vehicles get smarter. CEO John Krafcik said tests there on streets with names like McFly Way and the Shirley Muldowney Expressway are vital complements to the 10,000 miles of public road tests and 10 million virtual miles Waymo now racks up daily.

“Our intention, make no mistake, is to go fully driverless and let the public access this technology on public roads. We’ve been working so hard on that task,” he told a group of journalists touring the Castle this week. And while Krafcik, a long-time Hyundai and Ford executive who’s led the former Google X unit since 2015, won’t say exactly when Waymo goes commercial, he leaves no doubt that that’s coming.

“It’s fair to say we’re really close.”

A decade since a team of Carnegie Mellon University engineers won the 2007 DARPA Urban Challenge and eight years since Google began a (once) top-secret program to perfect autonomous car technology, Waymo appears to be at the leading edge of the self-driving revolution. After more than a $1 billion of R&D, it’s weathered the loss of key founding team members, faces numerous competing programs at auto and tech companies and is pursuing a rancorous lawsuit with Uber. Yet Waymo’s approach to testing, deployment and strategic partnerships is unfazed and laser-focused on building a business.

Google began doing vehicle tests at the Castle in 2012 after it outgrow a parking lot near company headquarters in Mountain View. While the old base’s tarmac is a bit past its prime, Waymo created a variety of new streets, a roundabout, cul-de-sacs and a highway-like section, all ringed by solar-powered streetlights. A few of the old Air Force buildings and barracks left when the base was decommissioned in the 1990s have been repurposed for Waymo engineers, while others appear to be slowly deteriorating.

On the Castle’s streets careless workers unloading a moving van might unexpectedly drop boxes in the path of a vehicle; rude drivers veer into a Waymo minivan’s lane abruptly and without signaling; and cars backing out of driveways in a simulated residential neighbor pull out when least expected. None of these scenarios appear to trouble the robots at the wheel.

In April Waymo began an “Early Rider” program in Chandler, Arizona, where residents who applied for the program can hail one its self-driving Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid minivans to take them anywhere they request in the metro-Phoenix area.

Although technicians are in the front seats of those vehicles for added safety for now, Waymo technical chief Dmitri Dolgov told reporters this week the minivans already have Level 4 autonomous capability, meaning they can drive without a human at the wheel in most circumstances. “We’re testing everywhere, in downtown streets, on freeways, on all kinds of streets,” Dolgov said.

To show just how sophisticated Waymo’s system has become, it put reporters in the back of its vans for brief test rides around the 60-acre Castle complex with no human at the wheel. That’s not standard practice for any company developing autonomous vehicle technology. Notably, Waymo didn’t require any of the few dozen journalists in attendance to sign legal waivers before taking a ride.

During the 1.5-mile loop, technicians acting as pedestrians, riding bicycles or driving other cars crossed paths with autonomous Waymo minivans. In each case, none of these distractions proved to be a problem. It was as if a skilled invisible driver was at the wheel. Which is precisely Waymo’s goal.

Krafcik identified four applications for the technology that are “super obvious and likely first steps for us.”

The first is in a ridesharing service – that may or may not be under the Waymo brand. Second is for commercial delivery applications. “Things like trucking and logistics makes a lot of sense for a company like Waymo,” he said.

Waymo may also work with cities to provide “last-mile” services that help people get from their homes to a transit station, for example. Interestingly, supplying the technology for use in personal vehicles ranks only fourth in Waymo’s priorities.

“For sure we see this technology as having the potential to be transformative, to make a lot of really good change for the world.”

FRESNO STATE RECEIVED A LARGE DONATION TO EXPAND THE ENGINEERING DEPARTMENT

FRESNO, Calif. – Fresno State is getting a huge jolt to its engineering program. Monday the school received a 450-thousand dollar donation to help expand the department.

Thanks to a new partnership with Chevron, Fresno State will continue to grow as a leader in stem education
“We have a very strong engineering ag and science and math program — all three coming together so it will elevate the program…make us stronger for all of our students,” said Fresno State President, Dr. Joseph Castro.

Monday representatives from Chevron presented Dr. Joseph Castro and the university a check for $450-thousand dollars. The donation will allow Fresno State to expand its engineering programs and to develop a process and control automation academy at the university. All students who complete the program will receive a special certificate.

“The funding we receive from Chevron will help us to develop materials and purchase equipment and mount this new certificate program that will enable our students to be more successful in preparing for jobs in the manufacturing industry,” said Dr. Castro.

Students say this donation will enable engineering majors the opportunity to advance their skill set and be better prepared for life after graduation.

Engineering major, Elias Karan said, “You’re not only learning theory in the classroom…you’re actually doing some hands-on practical work and that’s a great resume builder it’s going to make our students and our graduates much more competitive especially in the valley.”

Part of the money will also go to Fresno States College of Science and Mathematics Physics outreach program — where engineering majors visit valley schools and educate potential future students.

“We serve largely the valley students so it’s going to strengthen the valley because these students will get out there and become part of the next generation of leaders,” said Dr. Castro.

Commodities company expanding at port with new conveyor system

November 1, 2017

 

PORT OF STOCKTON — One company is making moves to speed up production and make operations more efficient.

M&L Commodities, Inc., based at the Port of Stockton, is expanding its service to include direct-vessel loading and unloading with new high-velocity conveyor belts.

The new conveyors feature 48-inch wide belts and can telescopically reach 190 feet. Maximum delivery of commodities to and from portside vessels can reach a rate of 2,000 tons per hour.

The belts will help with import operations to the company’s facilities, truck and rail and with export from the facilities directly to vessels via ship loader. The move is part of M&L’s expansion plan for infrastructure using “up-to-date, high technology equipment for more productive and efficient operations,” according to a statement released by the company.

M&L Commodities is a logistics service provider, assisting customers with transportation of goods. The company has more than 50 years of experience in international trade. They have strategically placed their operations for close proximity to railways, major interstate arteries and the Port of Stockton.

Their storage facilities are prepared for food grade commodities and organic warehousing, and they refrigerated services, container loading and unloading, full transport operations, vessel loading and unloading and more.

Commodities company expanding at port with new conveyor system