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NORTH CAROLINA'S MANUFACTURING STRENGTH SURPRISES PUBLISHER OF NEW DIRECTORY

 TWINSBURG, Ohio, Jan. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- When it comes to the nation's manufacturing sector, it takes a lot to surprise Robert Harris, president of Harris Publishing Company of Twinsburg, Ohio. As the leading publisher of manufacturers directories and directories on diskette, CD-ROM, and on-line for the United States, and provider of Canadian manufacturers directories, the Harris research staff are seasoned professionals. "We're proud to be compiling and publishing the '1993 Harris North Carolina Manufacturers Directory,'" said Harris, "but I must admit the large number of manufacturers in the state came as a shock. According to statistics compiled by other directory publishers, there are fewer than 6,000 manufacturing firms recorded. We're only half-way through this first-time compiling process and we've already surpassed that number."
 Fran Carlsen, editorial quality manager for Harris, keeps her fingers on the pulse of the manufacturing sector. "We contact virtually all of the manufacturers in each state we publish," she commented. "That means from the largest companies to the smallest mom and pop operations. This information is extremely in-depth, which makes it very valuable to people who market to manufacturers. Also, because we list more executive contact names than any other directory, our books are ideal for job seekers."
 In addition, job seekers could take note of two top industries in North Carolina identified by the preliminary Harris statistics. "Approximately 15 percent of the state's work force is employed in the textile mill industry," said Carlsen. "These are the people who prepare the fiber and subsequent manufacture of yarn, thread, braids, twine and cordage. This also includes the manufacture of fabrics, such as knits, carpets and rugs as well as, the dying and finishing of textile products."
 A closely-related industry, apparel and other finished products made from fabrics accounts for 12 percent of North Carolina's employment. This major group, better known in the industry as the cutting-up and needle trades, includes establishments producing clothing and fabricating products by cutting and sewing purchased woven or knit textile fabrics. Also included in the apparel industries are three types of establishments. These consist of regular or inside factories which perform all of the usual manufacturing functions within their own plant. Contract factories are the companies that manufacture apparel from materials owned by others. And finally, there are the apparel jobbers. These are the firms that provide the entrepreneurial functions of a manufacturing company like buying raw materials, designing samples, and among other things, arranging for the selling of the finished apparel.
 One of the largest apparel manufacturers in the state is Wrangler, Inc. Located in Greensboro, the company is known world-wide as a leading producer of denim jeans and related clothing. According to Micky Conklin, vice president of human resources for Wrangler, "Because of the high percentage of textile mills in North Carolina, it is an obvious advantage for us to be near the source of the raw materials they produce. Apparel is a very labor intensive business. North Carolina's productive work force provides the quality workmanship that people associate with the Wrangler name."
 "Lumber and wood products manufacturing is another element of North Carolina's industrial strength," according to Harris. "As more and more industrialized countries look to the United States for wood and wood products, one of the first places they turn to is North Carolina. At least 10 percent of the workers in the state are involved in the lumber and wood industries. Add to the mix the closely-related printing industry, and you can see why this sector of manufacturing is alive and well."
 Indeed, the numbers are impressive. For example, North Carolina's primary wood manufacturing, which includes logging, sawmills, planning mills, plywood, veneer, flooring, particle board, and wood preserving companies employs approximately 39,000 people with an annual payroll of $607 million. Secondary wood manufacturing, which includes wood furniture, wood fixtures, wood partitions, and upholstered furniture provides 82,100 jobs with an annual payroll of $1,295 million. And paper and allied products accounts for 21,800 people employed to the tune of $609 million.
 This wide and varied sector gives the state industrial clout, according to Earl Deal, an economist in the Wood and Paper Science Department at North Carolina State University. "Forests affect the lives of all North Carolinians," said Deal. "That's because 18.7 million acres, or about 60 percent of our state, is timber land. The lumber industry, including related products, is booming. The two segments of the lumber industry are hardwood and softwood. The hardwood industry has had major growth because of large exports. The softwood lumber industry is doing great, too. In fact, people can't keep up with the work. Although manufacturers of paper and allied products are in a period of slow growth, the other segments of the forest industry continue to be significant contributors to North Carolina's economy."
 "We're really looking forward to what the closing statistics for the '1993 Harris North Carolina Manufacturers Directory' will reveal about other major industries within the state," said Harris. "Publication date is March 23, 1993, and we've already started taking pre-publication orders. Actually, the compiling and production of a new directory is always exciting. It's especially exciting this time because of the positive response we're getting from people in North Carolina. Our editors are impressed with the friendliness of the manufacturers they've talked to thus far. I must admit, we're not only surprised by the positive statistics, we're gratified by the genuine warmth of the business community."
 For more information about Harris directories, call toll-free 800-888-5900.
 -0- 1/21/93
 /CONTACT: Barbara Brouse of the Harris Publishing Company, 800-888-5900, or by fax 800-425-7150/


CO: Harris Publishing Company ST: Ohio, North Carolina IN: PUB SU: PDT

BM -- CL001 -- 7196 01/21/93 07:34 EST
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