To The Editor:

Many economists agree that there are three ways to create wealth: To mine it, grow it or make it.

Missouri is rich in natural and agricultural resources, and Missouri manufacturers make everything from automobiles to aircraft parts to food products to furniture, chemicals and electrical equipment, including products sold directly to consumers and parts of other manufactured goods.

There are nearly 6,000 manufacturing companies in Missouri and they contribute $36.28 billion or 13.1 percent of the total gross state product, creating wealth for the more than 260,000 people directly employed in manufacturing and the many more whose livelihoods are indirectly supported by manufacturing.

Manufacturing jobs provide an annual compensation which is significantly higher than the state’s average wage and enable Missouri families to realize the dreams of owning a home, educating children and enjoying a secure retirement.

Manufacturers pay millions of dollars annually to support public education, law enforcement, emergency preparedness, public works and other essential services.

Missouri Enterprise takes the opportunity of Manufacturing Day 2017 (Oct. 6, 2017) to acknowledge the critical role that manufacturing plays in our economy and to ask our public officials to support policies that help manufacturers sustain and grow their companies.