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Jobs In Austin MN - Food Manufacturing and the Hormel Foodie Throwdown

Updated on November 21, 2014

Business Incentives Through JOBZ

The City of Austin MN, population approximately 24,000 in 2014, planned for expansion and business/residential growth through rebuilding, cultural development, expansion of local large firms (Hormel and Mayo Clinic) and business incentives for new enterprises.

The cost of living index is lower at 90, compared to the USA 100%. Violent crime is only half that of the US average.

The largest contributors to the Austin, Minnesota economy are two food manufacturers, Hormel Foods Corporation (founded 1891) and Quality Pork Processors.

The most recent figure form the US Census Bureau states that in 2007, merchant wholesaler sales in Mower County, largely in Austin, were $229,753,000. Retail sales for the County in 2007 was $347,668,000.

While food local manufacturers develop business expansions, Austin is drawing new business start-ups with promises to grow and increase your profits in its Minnesota Job Opportunity Building Zones. This program is specifically for new and relocating businesses and offers local and state tax exemptions in the area outside the Twin Cities (Minneapolis-St. Paul) on a total of 29,000 acres of commercial properties. Austin is located 100 miles from the center of Minneapolis.

In March 2012, the City of Austin had in development 20 commercial projects, with the majority in the JOBZ area program. At that time, the Oak Park Mall north of I-90 was for lease by the Upland Real Estate Group at, with plans for redevelopment and space available for additional retail clients.

Downtown Austin: Historic Paramount Theater


Downtown Redevelopment Project

Like many American towns and cities, Austin MN sought to revitalize and rebuild its declining Downtown Area. Considering the business incentives offered in the city, a vibrant downtown district for retail and residential purposes is needed to keep interested business entities and new residents once they have arrived. Business owners are put off by a decaying and crime ridden urban area and to keep Downtown Austin alive and attractive, an added partial rent reimbursement program to qualified businesses is offered.

The Austin Main Street Project is a program for ongoing downtown development and upgrades. Before and After snaps of the city streets and their refurbished business facades and landscaping show strong efforts exerted to upgrade the image and lifestyle of Austin.

Public arts enhance the area with murals placed on blank walls and several refurbished buildings are unrecognizable from their past decline. Beginning in 2005 as an ongoing program of the city, the project grew to nearly 40 new storefronts under revitalization in 2011 and increased further each year thereafter. Even the historic 1887 First National Bank Building was saved. New business have moved into the area and residential unites have been completed, with more to come.

Residential Properties, Early 2013

From Zillow real estate at

  • Price Range of Homes for Sale: $12,000 ( 2 BR urban area fixer-upper) - $579.000
  • Median Price: $89,900

Visiting the Spam Museum

Other Attractions

show route and directions
A markerJ.C. Hormel Nature Center -
Jay C Hormel Nature Center, 1304 21st St NE, Austin, MN 55912, USA
get directions

B markerGreibroks Mini History Farm, County HWY 34, Austin, MN -
County Highway 34, Austin, MN 55912, USA
get directions

C markerSleepy Eye -
Sleepy Eye, MN 56085, USA
get directions

Named Sisseton-Sioux chief; home to historical sites, Delmonte Foods, museums, retreat centers, hiking trails and Buttered Corn Days Celebration.

D markerWalnut Grove MN -
Walnut Grove, MN 56180, USA
get directions

Installations relevant to Laura Ingalls and "Little House On the Prairie."

Foodie Throwdown

To build on the industry of Food Manufacturing, Austin MN (or Spamtown), began an annual Foodie Throwdown in 2012. Part entertainment festival, part celebration of foods, and part trade show, this yearly event is likely to draw the attention of increasing numbers of visitors and new business ventures. The business incentives will add to the draw of entrepreneurs to Austin.

The concept of the food throwdown has been helped to popularity by Chef Bobby Flay and his Food Network show Throwdown, visiting cities across America. Towns and cities are having their own throwdowns and Hormel History House (HHH) decided to join the fray.

A Local Eatery


Foodie Throwdown

The Austin Daily Herald reported the dishes and fun at the first annual Foodie Throwdown in Austin, the theme for the inaugural year being Foodie Throwdown: Cuisines of the World” . The HHH board of directors asked local well known chef, Howie Crawford, with 30 years of experience to help. His contribution entered into helping design and inspire interest in a chef's competition that was held on Saturday March 10, 2012. Attendance turnout was more than expected and the attendees voted the South of the Border team chefs as a people's choice best of show type winner. The culinary styles in the competition includes: Asian Fusion, Italian (a Panna Cotta was very interesting and good), Mediterranean, Moroccan, and Tex-Mex.

If the competition committee decides to have a Secret Ingredient like Food Network's Iron Chef America, then I think it should be Spam from the local Hormel company -- If not for the major competition, then it might be an added smaller competition. A Junior Competition with Spam might be fun as well!

Hormel Historic House


Hormel Foods

Chef Howie Crawford is an Austin/Rochester MN resident on LinkedIn and has been a Corporate Chef for Hormel Foods since June, 1983. He is no doubt responsible for some of the many flavors of Spam and new dishes produced by Hormel, from pizza to microwave meals.

First Chefs In the Foodie Throwdown

Cuisine/Global Region
Team Members
South of the Boarder (Tex-Mex)
Jane Arhart and Kathy Fritz
The People's Choice Award. Used Colorful Tex-Mex inspired tables cloths,serving dishes, maraccas, etc.
The Mediterranean and Europe
Chef Howie Crawford
Local chef and resident for nearly 30 years. Featured Smoked Duck Breast.
Asian Fusion
Dr. Gareth Hataye and daughters Selena and Sydney
Delicious Chicken Wings, California Rolls, Bean Sprout Salad, and Wasabi. The doctor wore the flags of Korea and America on his jacket.
Taste of Italy
Chef Kristine Merten and Pastry Chef Barbara Dudley
Panna Cotta featured in the Austin Daily Herald
Moroccan Delight
Diane Sherman and Ilene Carroll
Featured an interesting dessert called "The Snake"
References:; News Radio 90.5 FM and 610 AM Cols OH; Retrieved 3-12-2010

Colleges and Universities In the Austin - Rochester Area

  • DeVry On Campus & Online College Degree Programs -- Brick and mortar campus with online college degree programs as well. DeVry University is a well known technical school across America. Flexible scheduling with online classes in several degree programs.
  • Historic Business School | Globe University | Online College Degree -- Globe University and Minnesota School of Business offers college degrees online and on-campus. These include a range of useful programs in job-getting fields like accounting, business administration, vet tech, medical assisting, legal careers, healthcare and IT. All of these are increasing in numbers of new jobs available through 2018. Founded in the 1800s and up-to-date for the 2010s.
  • The Hormel Institute University of Minnesota -- The Institute researches medical and health solutions to improve life for humans and animals, and the range of projects ongoing is jaw-dropping.. Since 1941, the institute has discovered many useful health aids, including omega 3 and omega 6, the obesity + cancer connection, resveratrol, and natural cancer-preventive compounds ginger and green tea. The Hormel Institute is planning to become a leading biomedical research center globally and is set to expand with new funding and scientists. The Institute works closely with the Mayo Clinic, University of Minnesota and IBM.
  • University of Minnesota at Rochester
  • Riverland Community College, Southern Minnesota -- Locations in Albert Lea, Austin and Owatonna, MN
  • Rochester Community and Technical College (RCTC) -- Rochester Community and Technical College, located in Rochester, MN offers many programs of study ranging from certificate, diploma, degree, and transfer options.
  • South Central College -- A popular Minnesota Community and Technical College training students for today's jobs.
  • SMSU | Southwest Minnesota State University -- Strong programs with degrees in education, business, and liberal arts.
  • Winona State University

Job Increases 2006 - 2014


Hormel Foods Jobs in Austin/Rochester

Job Openings and Internships at Hormel during March 2012:


  • Electrical Engineering, Production Management, Marketing, Consumer Insights, Industrial Engineering, IT Services, Quality & Process Control, and others.


  • Associate Quality and Process Control Supervisors
  • Associate Programmer Analysts
  • Associate Industrial Engineers
  • Database Administrators

Hormel Fellowships:

  • Hormel fellows work at the Hormel Institute of the University of Minnesota at Austin/Rochester in health, medical, and biomedical projects as Post-Doctoral work.

Mayo Clinic Jobs in Austin

  1. Children's Services Librarians
  2. Registered Nurses-Medical/Surgery; Regional Clinic Nurses (Rn, LPN or Certified Medical Assistant); LPNs - Urgent Care Center
  3. Informatics Specialists and Trainers
  4. Medicare Claims Processors
  5. Treatment Technicians
  6. Nurse Practitioners/Physician Assistants
  7. Medical Transcriptions
  8. Physical Therapists
  9. Family/Occupational Medicine positions
  10. Analyst Programmers
  11. Surgeons

Additional High Demand Jobs

  • Guest Services/ Customer Service Reps
  • Service Managers
  • Mechanics
  • Farm Crop Assistants
  • Sr. Analyst Programmers
  • Precision Agricultural Specialists
  • Trucking - Owner Operators
  • Pizza Hut Jobs - Shift Managers, Team Members, General Managers, Assistant Managers
  • Surgical Technologist
  • Management Trainees
  • Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs)
  • Salespeople



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    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 5 years ago from USA. Member of Asgardia, the first space nation, since October 2016

      How have you been Earth Angel? Thanks for visiting me again. If it's not interesting, it's not very good to read - SO, I keep digging.

    • Earth Angel profile image

      Earth Angel 5 years ago

      Your are amazing Patty dear! You could take ANY topic and present it as THE MOST INTERESTING thing read on any given day! YOU are the BEST! Blessings, Earth Angel!