Manufacturing Day 2022 Student Competition

New Mexico manufacturers are looking for good ideas to help them put sustainable practices into use. If you are a student in New Mexico, we invite you to participate in the MFG Sustainability Challenge Student Case Competition by offering solutions to challenges faced by manufacturers.

Scroll down to learn about the companies that submitted sustainability challenges. And then:

  • Select a company challenge.
  • Read the company background and click the link to the company website to learn more.
  • If additional information is needed, email denisew@newmexicomep.org with your specific information request. A company leader may be able to answer your questions or offer an onsite tour.
  • Submit a three-minute recorded audio-visual presentation outlining your solution to one or more of the company’s challenges. Tie your submission to Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as identified by the UNA-USA.
  • Include a completed entry form with your submission. See entry form for submission instructions.
  • Submission deadline is Wednesday, September 21, 2022.

Downloads and Links:


Companies and their Challenges:


Company A: Bidii Baby Food

Bidii Baby Food in Navajo Reservation and Gallup, NM, local family-owned Navajo producer of Neeshjhizhii Bi’ Taa’ Niił, Navajo Dried Steam Corn Cereal. Watch the video on Instagram, and read the company overview.

Challenge A1: To be a more sustainable agricultural producer and traditional foods manufacturer in their community, Bidii Baby Food would like to focus on the Social Area of gender equality so that more men-ALL people in the Navajo Nation are supported in learning about traditional production techniques, forging collaborative partnerships, and developing entrepreneurial ecosystems.

Challenge A2: To be a more sustainable agricultural producer and traditional foods manufacturer in their community, Bidii Baby Food would like to focus on the Economic Area of new investment/expenditures so that more members of the Navajo Nation are supported in learning about and practicing personal and business financial planning to include budgeting, saving, cost analysis, and re-investment.


Company B: Sulzer

Sulzer, in Farmington, NM, a global leader in fluid engineering specializing in pumping, agitation, mixing,
separation and purification technologies for fluids of all types. View these Sulzer videos:

Challenge B1: To be a more sustainable fluid engineering and mechanical services provider in their community, Sulzer would like to focus on the Social Area of human capital to recruit, train, and promote individuals with the skills and experience necessary for production in an ever-changing marketplace.

Challenge B2: To be a more sustainable fluid engineering and mechanical services provider in their community, Sulzer would like to focus on the Environmental Area of greenhouse gas emissions to shift from current production methods that use fossil fuels to new processes that use renewable energy sources like wind and solar.


Company C: Brady Trading LLC

Brady Trading LLC, in Flora Vista, NM, a local woman-owned startup that reclaims and repurposes takeoff and waste materials from the production of custom window treatments to make new home goods and fashion wares.

Challenge C1: To be a more sustainable materials processor and home goods manufacturer in their community, Brady Trading would like to focus on the Environmental Area of waste management and energy consumption to more efficiently collect, store, and transport reclaimed materials from first-generation production to second-generation reuse.

Challenge C2: To be a more sustainable materials processor and home goods manufacturer in their community, Brady Trading would like to focus on the Economic Area of local supplier/purchasing to identify and connect material sources, workforce, new product development, and markets for second-generation production.


Company D: Emerging Technology Ventures, Inc.

Emerging Technology Ventures, Inc. (ETV), in Alamogordo, NM, a woman-owned small business that develops autonomous air and ground platforms, integrated sensing, and predictive analytics for use in precision agriculture, critical infrastructure inspection, Defense, and public safety. See how the company used and was positively impacted by a recent grant.

Challenge D1: To be a more sustainable technology manufacturer and integrator in their community, ETV would like to focus on the Social Area of human capital to recruit, train, and promote individuals with the skills and experience necessary for production in an ever-changing marketplace.


Company E: Mezel Mods

Mezel Mods, in Rio Rancho, NM, a woman-owned small business that uses 3-D printing technology to develop and manufacture custom components and replacement parts for pinball gaming machines and other novelty items.

Challenge E1:To be a more sustainable 3-D printed accessories manufacturer in their community, Mezel Mods would like to focus on the Environmental Area of waste management to use less plastic and use more eco-friendly packaging for shipping of delicate materials; need recyclable or biodegradable alternatives for wrapping, packing slips and labels.

Challenge E2:To be a more sustainable 3-D printed accessories manufacturer in their community, Mezel Mods would like to focus on the Environmental Area of waste management to produce less plastic waste in the 3D printing manufacturing process, find alternatives to dispose of plastic waste (filament), and maintain quality/color of products in adopting new reused/recycled materials.


Company F: Jack’s Plastic Welding

Jack’s Plastic Welding, in Aztec, NM, a local small business manufacturer of a standard product line that includes inflatable boats, dry bags, and waterproof self-inflating mattresses, as well as an industrial product line that deals with the oil and gas, medical lift bags, water line inspections, and components for amusement rides, scuba divers, sailboat racing, water exercise equipment, climbing gear, medical patient simulators, and emergency spill containments.

Challenge F1: To be a more sustainable manufacturer of inflatable and waterproof products in their community, Jack’s Plastic Welding would like to focus on the Economic and Environmental Areas of Purchasing/Expenditures and Waste Management to mediate the regulations, costs, availability, and disposal of oil-based raw materials (PVC) used in production.

Challenge F2: To be a more sustainable manufacturer of inflatable and waterproof products in their community, Jack’s Plastic Welding would like to focus on the Economic Area of Net Value Added to balance employees’ economics so that skills, attitudes, and cost of living will match their production deliverables.

Challenge F3: To be a more sustainable manufacturer of inflatable and waterproof products in their community, Jack’s Plastic Welding would like to focus on the Social Area of Human Capital to help employees invest more in the company’s proprietary ways of production and training for long-term livelihood.


Company G: Sun Glass

Sun Glass is a local small business making custom orders out of glass and polymer materials for homes, businesses, autos, or a variety of other applications to include social distancing solutions for public safety.

Challenge G1: To be a more sustainable glass products provider in their community, Sun Glass would like to focus on the Social Area of Human Capital to facilitate deeper knowledge exchange between the experienced workforce and newer employees so that necessary skills are passed on and the company’s caring “people-first” culture is maintained.

Challenge G2: To be a more sustainable glass products provider in their community, Sun Glass would like to focus on the Environmental Areas of Energy Consumption and Waste Management to continue centralizing and streamlining operations to reduce transportation/fuel costs, as well as reducing deposits of glass material waste in landfills.

Challenge G3: To be a more sustainable glass products provider in their community, Sun Glass would like to focus on the Environmental Area of New Investment and Net Value Added to improve operations technology and workforce training so they can offer a wider range of services for auto glass installation and electronic component calibration, as well as deliver more energy-efficient glass products to residential, commercial, and historical preservation projects.


Company H: Aztec Rogue Foods

Aztec Rogue Foods is a woman-owned local producer and retailer of healthy snacks and tasty prepared foods that are packaged for people to take with them while they enjoy an active outdoor lifestyle. They use locally sourced ingredients in their jerky and baked goods.

Challenge H1: To be a more sustainable snack food producer in their community, Aztec Rogue Foods would like to focus on the Economic Area of Revenue/Net Value to realize greater efficiencies while making multiple product lines in a small commercial kitchen with limited space.

Challenge H2: To be a more sustainable snack food producer in their community, Aztec Rogue Foods would like to focus on the Economic Area of Local Supplier/Purchasing to realize greater cost savings and value-added by continuing to buy direct from growers and other small businesses in nearby communities.

Challenge H3: To be a more sustainable snack food producer in their community, Aztec Rogue Foods would like to focus on the Social Area of Human Capital to offer internships so that young people can learn more about general manufacturing business and retail operations while gaining soft skills like networking and leadership.


Company I: The Original Sweetmeat

The Original Sweetmeat, established in the late 1950s, is a local family-owned producer and retailer of traditional agricultural food products including butchered sheep, lamb, goat, as well as steamed corn, and other prepared foods. The company is enhancing its business operation to offer walkup custom livestock processing services for backyard growers.

Challenge I1: To be a more sustainable livestock processor in their community, The Original Sweetmeats would like to focus on the Social Area of Human Capital to educate young people in traditional agricultural practices and cultural preservation to ensure the business of being a small local processor can continue for future generations.

Challenge I2: To be a more sustainable livestock processor in their community, The Original Sweetmeats would like to focus on the Environmental Area of Waste Management and Energy Consumption by continuing to streamline operations for zero waste and work to help more people in the local community grow and safely process their own meat products so they can use the whole animal and save on transportation, packaging, and storage costs instead of buying only choice pieces from large factory farms at the grocery store.

Challenge I3: To be a more sustainable livestock processor in their community, The Original Sweetmeats would like to focus on the Economic Area of Revenue/net Value and Local Supplier/Purchasing to encourage growth in the local marketplace for homegrown foods using traditional agricultural practices that will encourage greater self-sufficiency and cultural preservation by supporting small backyard growers and entrepreneurial ecosystems.


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