It’s obvious that a well-run institution is destined for success, and the final effect is on the economy. However, Paul Krugman, in a recent study, argued out that manufacturing is one of the bright spots of a disappointing economy. Most economists wouldn’t agree with this. Companies are able to corner the whole market by being able to recognize a product that is viable to that particular niche; they will maximize on this opportunity by building factories that will focus on that specific product for mass production.
So what is a factory? Well, this is a system that was developed to be able to reorganize labor by using machines that were too big to be domesticated. It’s a system that is capable of producing goods on a mass scale, made possible by machines that were a replacement for the traditional craftsman.
This system was introduced in England during the industrial revolution. The main purpose of industrialization was to reduce production cost, allow for cheap labor, and to create employment opportunities in the locations that they are developed. In America, Walmart has to be the most prominent distribution retail store with more than 11,008 locations; its closest rival Target Stores has four main import distribution centers that were mainly developed to cater for imports.
These companies and institutions that have some of the largest factories are also some of the most influential names in the economic world. The following are 20 largest factories in the world.
20. The Volkswagen Wolfsburg Plant
This is one of the biggest automotive plants in the whole world, and it boasts production of over 40 million vehicles over the years. This plant is located in West Germany, and it’s estimated to be 5 square km, making it one of the most advanced and largest factories in the world.
Volkswagen also has the largest state of the art body art paint shop in Europe, and it’s also the first ever company to use eco-friendly water-based paint. The Volkswagen press shop at Wolfsburg is known to produce 1,500 metric tons of sheet metal every day. This factory is so huge, the workers are allowed to use their bicycles to navigate through different departments.
19. The Hyundai Motor Company Ulsan Factory
This is also one of the biggest automotive factories in the world, and in case you thought the Volkswagen Wolfsburg factory was big, then you need to know that the Hyundai Motor Company factory in Ulsan is probably 10 times bigger than Telsa’s factory. This factory is over 5 million square meters and it’s the main production facility of the company.
The Hyundai Company has 5 different production factories that are known to produce a vehicle every 12 seconds! That’s approximately 1.53 million cars in one year. This factory is so huge it has its own road network, an infrastructure that’s complete with a hospital, fire services, and a sewage treatment plant. If you thought your gated community was huge, then you better visit this plant.
18. The Tesla Factory
Located in Fremont California, it’s one of the most advanced automotive plants in the world and is about 5.3 million square feet. This facility was acquired by the company back in 2010 and remodeled before; its first production rolled off in June 2012 for the Model S.
Before its occupation by Tesla this facility was owned by General Motors, and it produced more than 500,000 vehicles in a year from 1984 to 2009 when its partnership ended with Toyota. The plant currently produces more than 100,000 vehicles for Tesla annually. The plant consists of a body shop, entrance power train assembly and revamps facilities for Tesla employees.
17. The Aalsmeer Flower Auction building
Flowers are big business, especially in the Netherlands, that’s why the Aalsmeer Flower Auction building is the center of that business. Many factories claim to be the largest in the world, and Aalsmeer Flower Auction building claims to be one of them. Because of this, the Guinness Book of World Records recognizes this building as the largest commercial building in the world. You don’t think so? Well, the Aalsmeer Flower Auction building covers approximately 5.5 million square feet, and in case you have seen its open floor, you will realize that it’s practically impossible to see one end of the building from the other side. The Aalsmeer Flower Auction building is known to sell 20 million flowers every weekday. That totals up to approximately 2 billion pounds annually.
16. The Boeing Factory
Located in Everett Washington, is the location of the world’s largest Boeing factory in the World. This factory has a mind blowing floor area of approximately 398,000 meters squared. The facility covers about 98.3 acres of land making it a mega factory. This is the birthplace of the Boeing 747, 767 and the 777. The latest Dreamliner 787 is also produced at this particular facility. This plant was constructed in 1966 when Pan American Airways placed an order for 25 747 Airplanes that were valued at that time for about $525 million. Apart from the construction equipment in the facility, it also features a Boeing store, coffee stands, cafes and a theater. In case you’d like to have a tour of this facility, Boeing has exclusive factory tours through its Future of Flight Aviation center and Boeing Tour.
15. Mitsubishi Motors in North America
This is also one of the largest automotive plants in the world, and according to automotive language, the size of the plant means economies of scale. This facility was put up back in 1981 to oversee the production and sales across the US, Mexico, Caribbean and Canada. This is done through a well-developed efficient network of over 700 vehicle dealers.
This facility is approximately 220,000 meters squared that mainly produces its famous model, the Mitsubishi Outlander. Other cars that were produced for its North American Clientele include the Eclipse, Galant and Chrysler Sebring. This mega factory is located in Normal, Illinois.
14. Toyota Manufacturing Kentucky
This is one of Toyota’s largest vehicle manufacturing plants in the world. It has a calculated annual capability of producing about 550,000 to 600,000 engines in a single year. Since its inception back in 1988, this manufacturing plant has rolled off more than 10 million vehicles. This plant has around 8000 employees. It produces the popular American Camry, Avalon, and the Lexus ES sedan.
This factory mainly deals indie manufacturing, stamping, welding, engine assembly, vehicle assembly and axle machining. The company has designated a zero landfill facility within its premises, meaning that all the waste that is produced from the factory is recycled or reused. It also has a large vegetable garden, used to help nearby charitable organizations such as God’s Pantry.
13. Samsung Vietnam
Samsung Electronics became the world’s largest investor when it set up a factory in Vietnam. This particular factory exports to more than 50 countries all over the world. This factory has also provided more than 200 million smartphones since it was built back in 2015. Samsung has made Vietnam one of the largest smartphone manufacturing headquarters in the world. Samsung currently has a total of nine factories that manufacture smartphones globally; the Vietnam Factory is currently the largest. Samsung spent $32.5 billion in constructing the factories in Bac Ninh, Vietnam. Some of Samsung’s iconic phones, such as the Samsung Galaxy S7 have been produced here.
12. General Electric Pune, India
This Multimodal factory is located on the outskirts of Pune and was noted in one of India’s growth initiatives dubbed the “Made in India” campaign. General Electric operates through the following segments; power and water, aviation, gas, healthcare, finance, and transportation. This factory is spread over 67 acres, and it is among the first flexible factories in the world. This means there will be a variety of products that will be produced from this factory using shared infrastructure, labors, and equipment from the same facility. General Electric has invested over $200 million in this factory.
11. The Belvidere Assembly Plant
This plant is located in Illinois, United States. The Belvidere is a Chrysler factory that’s famous for assembling a variety of vehicle brands such as the Jeep Patriot and the Dodge Dart. Apart from assembling two of the most common vehicles is America, this plant in the past also assembled the Chrysler Imperial, Chrysler New Yorker, the Plymouth Neon and the Dynasty. Well, if you thought the Mitsubishi Plant was big, then you need to know that the Belvidere Assembly Plant is about 330,000 meters squared; that’s about 700 meters long and 300 meters wide. This factory sits on about 280 acres of land. This company’s labor force generally consists of robots; the main body shop is known to have more than 780 robots.
10. Target Warehouse Lacey, Washington
Target is perhaps the most popular retail store in the US. Did you know that it also has one of the largest warehouse facility in the whole world? Well, Target is the second largest discount retailer in America after Walmart. To be able to keep up with the demand and supply of their products, this facility needs a mega warehouse, and so far, it has one of the largest warehouses with a total floor area of 185,800 meters squared. This warehouse was constructed to supply its internal distribution centers with imported products. Target has more than 1,934 stores in North America alone, which the reason behind this massive warehouse.
9. The Jean-Luc Lagardere Plant
This facility is located in Toulouse, Blagnac. The factory is mainly used as a final assembly line in the production of the 800-seater Airbus A380 that costs a whopping $428 million. The Jean-Luc Lagardere plant is 470m long and has a footprint of about 122,500 meters squared. The famous Airbus is also manufactured in several of the company’s locations that include the UK, Germany, Spain and France. All these parts are usually brought to the Jean-Luc Lagardere Plant for final assembly of the Airbus. The planes are also tested at the same location. Apart from the plant facility, the factory also consists of the staff restaurants, energy plant and 45 acres for its runways.
8. Laura Fabrics
This is a manufacturing company that produces the raw material that is used to make lingerie. It also manufactures elastic ribbons and fabric. In its niche, Laura Fabrics is the largest so far in the world. The facility measures 115,645 meters squared.
The construction of this fabric plant started in 1965 in Liepaja, Latvia. This came at a time when the region suffered from unemployment. Initially, the company was known as Women’s Toiletry Production Factory, before it was changed to Lauma Fabrics in 1965. This company plays a significant role in the production of fabrics, justifying the stunning size of its plant.
7. Tesco Distribution Center Ireland
This is a dry grocery and electrical goods distribution center for discount retailer Tesco. This plant is by far the largest building in Ireland today. It was first opened back in 2007, and it measures approximately 80,194 meters squared. This building is so huge it’s close to half a mile in length. In case you haven’t visited the plant, it will take you an average of 12 minutes to walk from one end to the other. This facility is equipped with 100 loading bays. It’s said to have been constructed for a whopping 70 million EUR. Tesco is a global leader in household and grocery products.
6. Constellation Bristol
Located in the United Kingdom, this is perhaps every alcohol connoisseur’s dream, since it’s one of the largest beer and wine warehouses in the world. This warehouse measures approximately 850,000 meters squared and is believed to carry a stunning 9.5 million gallons of alcohol. I bet your town couldn’t consume that much alcohol in a year. The size of this warehouse is compared to 12 Olympic-sized swimming pools. The facility houses more than 57 million wine bottles that account for around 15% of the UK’s wine market in total. This facility bottles some 800 wine bottles in a minute, that’s 6 million bottles a day!
5. John Deere North America Parts Distribution Center
This is an American Corporation that’s known for manufacturing agricultural, forestry and construction machinery such as engines, drivetrains and heavy duty equipment. The company is known for its iconic leaping deer logo that has been used for more than 155 years. The company’s logo changes from black to green depending on whether it’s used on agricultural or construction equipment. The construction equipment has a green logo while the construction equipment has a black logo. The plant measures about 246,000 meters squared that’s about 2.3 million square feet making it one of the largest building in the world.
4. Amazon Distribution Center
This plant was built to distribute products to Amazon Clients. Amazon is the largest internet based retailer in the entire world and was founded back in 1994 based in Seattle, Washington. The company started off as an online bookstore but later diversified into selling DVDs, downloads, streaming, mp3, toys and nowadays anything you can think of. The company also offers international shipping all over the globe hosting separate retail websites for different countries. The Amazon Distribution Center is approximately 117,450 meters squared, with a length of 675m and a width of 174m.
3. Aerium, Germany
This mega establishment was built by the Nazis in the early years of World War II as a military base. It was occupied by the Nazis until 1945 when it was seized by the Red Army. Its runway was later increased from 1000m to 2500m by the Soviet Army, making it an ideal place to house fighter planes. After the reunification of the Soviet Army and East Germany, the establishment was occupied by a company known as CargoLifter and was used to build aircraft. After six years, CargoLifter went bankrupt and was acquired by a Malaysian company that currently owns the theme park that is currently there.
2. Meyer Werft
Ever been to a Shipyard? Well, if you have, then you know how expansive and humongous the facility needs to be. The Meyer Werft is one of the largest shipyards in the world, and it’s located in Germany. This shipyard company was founded back in 1975, and is home to the largest shipping hall in the entire world. The floor is a stunning 63,000 meters, and it’s mainly used in the construction of cruise ships. This roofed yard is approximately 504m in length, a width of 125m and a height of 75m. Some of the master pieces from this shipyard include the Radiance of the Seas, Norwegian Jewel among other great ships.
1. NASA Vehicle Assembly Plant
This facility is located between Jacksonville and Miami, and is the largest single-story building in the world, topping this list of top 20 companies with the biggest factories around the world. The facility was built in 1966 for the Apollo program where the Saturn V Rocket was assembled. This plant measures a jaw-dropping 32,374 meters squared with 3.66 million meters cubic volume. The factory covers about 8 acres of land and is about 525 feet tall. This facility also has some of the most fascinating features of any factory in the world. It has four 456 foot doors that are gargantuan, 71 cranes and over 98,000 tons of steel. This is clearly an impressive structure.
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