Mid-America Trade Adjustment Assistance Center (TAAC) administers TAAF, a federal program funded by the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA). TAAF’s mission is to boost American manufacturers’ ability to compete in a global market of less expensive foreign competition to expand markets, strengthen operations and increase profitability, thereby increasing U.S. jobs. Mid-America TAAC implements this mission by providing technical assistance and cost sharing improvement projects with manufacturers negatively impacted by import competition.
The Mid-America Trade Adjustment Assistance Center is sponsored by the EDA and is a partnership of the MU College of Engineering and MU Extension’s Business Development Program (BDP).
Mid-America TAAC provides assistance to manufacturing firms in four states: Iowa, Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska.
To get help
Since 1974, TAAF has helped thousands of U.S. manufacturers strengthen and solidify their competitive positions and prosper in the global marketplace. Mid-America TAAC clients have increased net sales and employment greater than 10 percent while participating in the TAAF program.
- Despite its low cost, TAAF has a large footprint. A total of 538 firms received assistance through the TAAF program in 2021. In sum, these firms employed almost 31,830 workers at the time they entered the program, and generated annual sales of more than $10.1 billion.
- Firm cost-share is significant. Client companies received $7.4 million in TAAF assistance during 2021 and contributed another $3.8 million to undertake business improvement projects. The TAAF program thus provided $11.2 million in assistance to firms.
- TAAF assists small manufacturers. All firms certified last year were manufacturing firms with an average size of 127 employees and $23 million in sales.
- The program has a major impact on participating firms. Only 10 TAAC clients went out of business or were sold in 2021 — a survival rate of 99 percent. This is particularly impressive given that firms must have declining sales and employment to qualify for TAAF.
- Firm performance is strong. Recent TAAF graduates improved their sales, employment and productivity by an average of 50, 2 and 46 percent respectively while in the program.
- The program's impact on firms is long-lasting. EDA tracks recent program participants and reports on firm performance two years following TAAF completion. Two years after completing the program, TAAF graduates added more jobs, on average, than other manufacturers. They also grew sales by an average of 9 percent since leaving the program.
- TAAF supports exporting. Almost one-fifth of all projects approved in new recovery plans last year were explicitly designed to help firms increase export opportunities (19 percent).
(Source: Report on TAAF program in EDA's FY2021 annual report to Congress)
- “The Mid-America TAAC team has been tremendously helpful. It's a great program.” - Scott Livington, Prier Products, Inc., Grandview, MO
- “Our experience with the TAAC office was great! I personally worked with Becky, who was extremely responsive and helpful. Every question had an answer. At one point, I was navigating through three grants at once. It was a lot, but Becky made it very straightforward and simple.” - Kate Bowermaster, Bruin Manufacturing, Marshalltown, IA
- “My TAAC project manager was a phenomenal resource.” - Larry Hicks, Cardinal Scale Manufacturing Co., Webb City, MO
- “We found the TAAC Center personnel to be very easy to work with and would recommend their services to any business that needs help to stay competitive in the international markets we all find ourselves competing in in this day and age.” - Bruce Jenny, Hastings Irrigation Pipe Co., Hastings, NE
- “My TAAC project manager has gone above and beyond so many times. I wish all of my consultants were as helpful.” - Margaret Fitzgerald, Milbank Manufacturing Company, Kansas City, MO
- “The partnership with Mid-America TAAC allowed us to be able to create our website and rejuvenate our brand to create a first impression that is matched by no one in the industry. Without the assistance in funding from the TAAC office, the ability to get rebranding project underway and to take it to the level that we did would have been much more difficult.” - Brandon Ulmer, Omaha Steel, Wahoo, NE
Learn how individual firms leveraged our help for their success.