ST. CLOUD - You may not realize there’s a stainless steel manufacturing powerhouse nestled right into west St. Cloud.

DCI, inc. started in Holdingford in 1955 and moved to their current location (600 54th Avenue North) in the 60’s and 70’s. DCI communications manager Allison Waggoner says they create custom stainless steel equipment for everything from the dairy industry to breweries. The vessels range in size from 5-15 liters to up to 75,000 gallons.

"You can think about the big vessels you'll see at a dairy plant, or if you go out to Third Street Brewery, you can think about the big tanks that you see in the back."

DCI supplies stainless steel products to industries that need the long-lasting, corrosion-resistant containers for processing and storage. DCI started as Dairy Craft Inc, focusing specifically on storage tanks for the dairy industry. However, you can now find their products in a more expanded market.

"While we still have a significant dairy part, we serve the beverage, cosmetic, pharmaceutical and biotech industries, it's much broader than just dairy nowadays," Waggoner says.

After decades, DCI has grown to have 190 employees. Their products are part of the process that brings milk to your fridge or your pharmacy orders. DCI touts that you probably have over a dozen items in your home that were once stored in tanks made right in St. Cloud. They still supply to a few local businesses, but their products can now be found across the county.

"Third Street [Brewhouse] and Beaver Island are a nice local niche, but highly unusual for us. Most of our business is around the country and we do some international."

DCI has a senior workforce and is taking part in the upcoming tour of manufacturing on October 8th to highlight their upcoming job openings. There will be dozens of manufacturing jobs available at their plant in the next three to 10 years as employees begin retiring.

 

WJON File Photo