Essential Manufacturing in Business under Minnesota’s Stay At Home Order for COVID-19

Randy Feld

Manufacturing is essential to Minnesota and the country and many manufacturing businesses will be exempt from Minnesota new law that goes into effect March 27, 2020.

Here’ what we know, in Minnesota from midnight on Friday March 27, 2020 to midnight on Friday April, 10, 2020, all people living in Minnesota are ordered to stay at their home or residence (as specifically defined) except to engage in activities in critical (essential) sectors, that include certain manufacturing sectors and activities.  The order does not restrict virtual work or telework in any field, essentially working from home.  There will judgement that goes into determining if an employee or company is working in a critical sector.   There are three resources that provide guidance to help with this:

  • The Governor’s Executive Order 20-20
  • US Department of Homeland Security Memo on identification of essential critical infrastructure workers during COVID-19 response
  • List of NAICS codes determined to be critical industries

Critical Manufacturing defined in Order 20-20:  This category is limited to critical manufacturing workers listed in the CISA Guidance (US Department of Homeland Security -Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency).  This category includes iron ore mining and processing operations and supplier/vendor industries essential to such mining and processing operations.

CISA defines critical manufacturing as the following: Workers necessary for the manufacturing of materials and products needed for medical supply chains, and for supply chains associated with transportation, energy, communications, food and agriculture, chemical manufacturing, nuclear facilities, the operation of dams, water and wastewater treatment, emergency services, and the defense industrial base.  Additionally, under the category of food there are several qualifying activities.

The following specific manufacturing business are defined as critical:

Industry Description Industry Code Critical Industry
Metal Ore Mining 2122 YES
Support Activities for Mining 2131 YES
Sugar and Confectionery Product Manufacturing 3113 YES
Fruit and Vegetable Preserving and Specialty Food Manufacturing 3114 YES
Dairy Product Manufacturing 3115 YES
Animal Slaughtering and Processing 3116 YES
Bakeries and Tortilla Manufacturing 3118 YES
Other Food Manufacturing 3119 YES
Beverage Manufacturing 3121 YES
Converted Paper Product Manufacturing 3222 YES
Petroleum and Coal Products Manufacturing 3241 YES
Basic Chemical Manufacturing 3251 YES
Pesticide, Fertilizer, and Other Agricultural Chemical Manufacturing 3253 YES
Pharmaceutical and Medicine Manufacturing 3254 YES
Soap, Cleaning Compound, and Toilet Preparation Manufacturing 3256 YES
Other Chemical Product and Preparation Manufacturing 3259 YES
Plastics Product Manufacturing 3261 YES
Rubber Product Manufacturing 3262 YES
Steel Product Manufacturing from Purchased Steel 3312 YES
Alumina and Aluminum Production and Processing 3313 YES
Foundries 3315 YES
Forging and Stamping 3321 YES
Boiler, Tank, and Shipping Container Manufacturing 3324 YES
Machine Shops; Turned Product; and Screw, Nut, and Bolt Manufacturing 3327 YES
Agriculture, Construction, and Mining Machinery Manufacturing 3331 YES
Industrial Machinery Manufacturing 3332 YES
Commercial and Service Industry Machinery Manufacturing 3333 YES
Ventilation, Heating, Air-Conditioning, and Commercial Refrigeration Equipment Manufacturing 3334 YES
Computer and Peripheral Equipment Manufacturing 3341 YES
Communications Equipment Manufacturing 3342 YES
Audio and Video Equipment Manufacturing 3343 YES
Semiconductor and Other Electronic Component Manufacturing 3344 YES
Navigational, Measuring, Electromedical, and Control Instruments Manufacturing 3345 YES
Electrical Equipment Manufacturing 3353 YES
Other Electrical Equipment and Component Manufacturing 3359 YES
Medical Equipment and Supplies Manufacturing 3391 YES


For more information, contact Randy Feld, CPA at



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