Bay Area Urban Manufacturing Initiative Expands From 4 to 26 Cities to Accelerate the Resurgence of Manufacturing

Now in its second year, the collaboration released toolkits designed to grow the region’s manufacturing sector and announced unified support for pursuing policy to allocate state resources for assistance to manufacturers

Hodo Soy, Inc. of Oakland, CA. (courtesy, Hodo Soy)

OAKLAND, Calif.--()--Following its launch in 2016 with the region’s four largest cities, the Bay Area Urban Manufacturing Initiative has grown to comprise 26 cities collaborating to build a more powerful, interconnected regional manufacturing ecosystem.

A project of nonprofit SFMade, the collaboration today released toolkits it developed to guide municipalities on land-use, promotional, and other strategies to help manufacturers thrive. The group also announced as a top policy priority its unified support for allocating state resources to fund technical assistance to small and medium-sized manufacturers.

“The Bay Area Urban Manufacturing Initiative is now 26-cities strong. With the Bay Area at the epicenter of technology and design and rich in industrial commons, manufacturing growth across our region now outpaces both the nation and California as a whole,” said Kate Sofis, CEO of SFMade. “These cities have banded together to continue that momentum because when manufacturing does well in the Bay Area, the entire region benefits.”

With major funding from Citi Community Development, Kaiser Permanente and PG&E, the impetus for the Bay Area Urban Manufacturing Initiative is to grow the number of middle-income jobs and create a more equitable and diverse regional economy. Collaboration leaders presented research on local manufacturing, prepared by JLL. Highlights include:

  • The Bay Area region employs more than 340,000 manufacturing workers, representing 10 percent of the local workforce.
  • More than 7,500 manufacturing companies operate in the Bay Area.
  • Manufacturing-related salaries in the Bay Area are reported up to $150,000 per year.
  • Food and Beverage production is the number one sector manufacturing in the region.

“The manufacturing sector is alive and thriving in the Bay Area, home to thousands of companies bringing creativity and stability to cities and creating opportunities for people from a variety of backgrounds and with a variety of backgrounds and skills,” said Vicki Joseph, Northern California Region Market Manager for Citi Community Development. “The Bay Area Urban Manufacturing Initiative is not only uniting cities on a regional level to support urban manufacturing, it is sharing and replicating tested strategies for creating jobs and building a more robust, connected and inclusive economy.”

At its second annual summit, the collaboration released how-to guides to give city staff, policy makers, and partner organizations concrete tools to increase engagement with their manufacturing sectors. These strategies were illustrated by case studies – some of which were best practices shared from economic development departments within the collaborative.

“Pittsburg is a key location in the Bay Area’s manufacturing network. We couldn’t pass up an opportunity to participate in this effort where you’re collaborating with other municipalities, sharing and receiving industry knowledge,” said Mayor Merl Craft of Pittsburg, a recent addition to the group. “We’re in this together as a region, to improve the lives of workers and their families.”

Minh Tsai, CEO of Oakland’s Hodo Soy, which employs 130 workers, noted, "As interest in our brand and our delicious products grows nationally, we would like to continue creating meaningful jobs with great benefits for the folks in Oakland. Giving employees a meaningful wage is the first step; next, the flexibility to take care of their kids and to enroll in English classes; then comes health benefits and our 401k program. Hodo commits to supporting a pathway to a middle-class livelihood for all our employees and their children."

To download the TOOLKITS and JLL’s INFOGRAPHIC, visit


For more information, visit


For more information, visit


For SFMade
Maureen Futtner, 415-637-3280

Release Summary

Bay Area Urban Manufacturing Initiative, now 26-cities strong, presents latest research and releases toolkits to accelerate manufacturing in region.


For SFMade
Maureen Futtner, 415-637-3280