Report Builder

Chemistry & Plastics

From the laboratory to the production line, corporations in the chemical industry have found Cincinnati USA to be a key ingredient in their formula for success. As a leader in chemical and plastics employment, Cincinnati USA is home to almost 300 businesses involved in the manufacturing of basic and specialty chemicals; pharmaceuticals; soaps and cleaners; flavorings; printing inks; adhesives, paints, and coatings; and plastics and rubber products.

View the Cincinnati USA Partnership's chemistry & plastics industry brochure

An Experienced Workforce

  • Cincinnati USA has a stable, productive workforce of 1.5 million within 50 miles.
  • 35,600 skilled workers are employed by Cincinnati USA's chemical and plastics companies. Of these, more than 3,000 are chemists, chemical engineers and technicians, and chemical plant and systems operators.

Extensive Research & Development

  • Cincinnati USA R&D activities cover a wide variety of applications: from inks, polymers, flavorings, medical diagnostics and cosmetics to fluids for machining, grinding and corrosion resistance.
  • R&D in niche industries:
    • Biologics International, Inc. - the world's largest producer of both pharmaceutical and cosmetic grades of Live Yeast Cell Derivative.
    • HiTech Polymers Inc. - a custom compounder of specialty and thermoplastic resins for the consumer, medical, electronics, packaging, construction, and automotive industries.
    • The National Center for Environmental Assessments - Cincinnati division - focuses on environmental economics, which integrates ecological and human health risk assessments with economic analysis to support decision-making.
  • R&D in polymer science, membranes for fuel cells, and nanotechnology - as well as spinoffs from genetic and pharmaceutical research - is increasing throughout the region due in part to federal funding and industry-university partnerships at local universities and hospitals.
  • The National Science Foundation (NSF) has funded a industry-university cooperative research center at the University of Cincinnati (UC) College of Engineering's Center for Membrane Applied Science and Technology (MAST), a dual site research center involving faculty and students from UC and the University of Colorado.
  • UC's Biomedical, Chemical, and Environmental Engineering Department was formed to to further ground-breaking advances in physics, chemistry, materials science, electronics, and medicine, as well as to help educate the next generation of scientists and engineers. Developed through an interdisciplinary, intercollegiate collaboration at UC, the Institute is one of only 12 national grantees funded by the NSF to focus on integrating nanoscale science into undergraduate education. Molecular manufacturing, or nanotechnology, is expected to require a worldwide workforce of 2 million in the next decade.
  • U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Centers of R&D Excellence employ hundreds of scientists, engineers, and technicians throughout Cincinnati USA.
  • The National Homeland Security Research Center in Cincinnati coordinates research on detection, containment, and clean up of potential chemical, biological, and radiological terror attacks.
  • The National Risk Management Research Laboratory's Cincinnati office develops methods to prevent and reduce water and watershed pollution, as well as restore ecosystems.
  • The National Center for Environmental Assessments - Cincinnati division- focuses on environmental economics, which integrates ecological and human health risk assessments with economic analysis to support decision-making.

Chemistry Innovators

  • KAO Brands Co. (formerly Andrew Jergens) produces Jergens Natural Glow, a moisturizer researched and developed in Cincinnati USA that features a touch of sunless tanner. Since its launch in 2005, the product has become the number one selling hand and body lotion.
  • Ineos ABS is a world leader in the engineering and manufacturing of thermoplastic resins.

Top Educational Support
Currently, 22 PhD programs at six universities within 200 miles of Cincinnati USA, including the University of Cincinnati, are ranked high in chemical engineering, materials engineering, chemistry, biochemistry, molecular biology, and pharmacology.

The University of Cincinnati (UC):

  • UC ranks second in nanotechnology education in the U.S.
    • Wim van Ooij, professor of chemical and materials engineering at UC, holds more than 50 patents and has submitted more than 100 invention disclosures, largely on coatings and corrosion protection.
  • UC was recently awarded a five-year, NSF grant to train U.S. graduate students with a focus on interdisciplinary applications of membrane science. The $4 million Integrative Graduate Education and Research Training (IGERT) award involves principal investigators from the UC College of Engineering Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering and the College of Medicine Department of Genome Science. Additional investigators include the Departments of Biomedical Engineering, Pharmacology and Cell Biophysics, and Pediatrics and Surgery.
  • UC offers undergraduate and graduate degree programs in chemistry, biochemistry, bio-organic chemistry, biopharmaceutics, pharmacology, and other related specialties.
  • UC's environmental health department has received an $8 million grant from the National Institute of Environmental Health Services to operate a hazardous waste worker training program, one of only 18 in the U.S.

Other local colleges and universities serving the chemical industry include:

For more information about the region's chemistry & plastics cluster, please contact us or Cincinnati USA Partnership at 513-579-3157.



Data Center




I am