SAUK RAPIDS - Agricultural facilities all over the world are keeping their animals and crops cool with fans made right here in Sauk Rapids.

Schaefer Ventilation is the latest business being given the spotlight in our "Made in Central Minnesota" series.

The company started in 1951 in Sauk Rapids serving local farmers and agribusiness. Now, decades later, Schaefer makes and ships 20% of their 40 lines of fans to hot regions around the world, like the Middle East, Pakistan and Turkey.

President and engineer Neil Crocker says the company has tripled in size since the 2009 recession, and prides itself on being able to provide central Minnesota with the kinds of jobs rapidly being outsourced to other countries.

Crocker describes Schaefer as formerly an "accidental exporter." They didn't initially set out to be a world leader in industrial fans, but heavy marketing and an online presence has led to the expansion.

The fans are all assembled, packaged and shipped from Sauk Rapids via a 45 person workforce, most of whom have a mechanical or technical background.