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2021 Manufacturing Excellence Awards

Photo | Courtesy of United Solutions Maria Tello Hernandez, an employee at United Solutions.

It’s difficult to overstate the importance the manufacturing industry plays in the Central Massachusetts economy. At nearly $7 billion in annual gross domestic product, it is the region’s largest industry by economic output, accounting for 14% of the local business community’s GDP. Since the American Industrial Revolution, the Central Massachusetts region has been built on manufacturing, and that seems unlikely to change any time in the near future.

However, aside from the brewing, cannabis and life science subsectors, manufacturers toil away in relative obscurity, as they steadily and consistently produce their products with little fanfare. Manufacturing doesn’t have the same buzz as the restaurant industry, the large workforce of the healthcare industry, or the built-in prestige of higher education, but it forms the backbone of the region.

Every year since 2016, WBJ has taken occasion to honor a handful of these high-achieving (and often low-profile) manufacturers in our Manufacturing Excellence Awards. Included among these winners is one overall Manufacturer of the Year (an award previously named Overall Manufacturing Excellence), as well as awards for specific achievements like workforce development, product innovation, and collaboration. In addition to these companies, we honor one person who has been a Manufacturing Champion in the last year, supportive of the industry’s needs.

On top of this edition, WBJ will further honor the Manufacturing Excellence Award winners at the upcoming virtual Central Mass. Manufacturing Summit & Awards on May 19. You may register at for this free event, which will also include a panel discussion with industry leaders about the most pressing issues facing manufacturing today.

– Brad Kane, editor

WBJ Web Partners


  • Manufacturer of the Year
    Manufacturer of the Year
    United Solutions, Leominster
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  • Rising Star
    Rising Star
    DetraPel, Inc., Framingham
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  • Manufacturing Champion
    Manufacturing Champion
    Darcy Cook, Worcester
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  • Workforce Development Award
    Workforce Development Award
    Quabbin Wire & Cable Co., Inc., Ware
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  • Green Manufacturer Award
    Green Manufacturer Award
    US Pack, Leominster
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  • Collaboration in Manufacturing Award
    Collaboration in Manufacturing Award
    Redemption Rock Brewing Co., Worcester
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  • Product Design & Innovation Award
    Product Design & Innovation Award
    United Stretch Design Corp., Hudson
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