ERMCO, senator discuss supply challenges


ERMCO COO Jeff Hammons (right) shows a transformer part to Tennessee Sen. Bill Hagerty (left) during a tour of one of ERMCO’s manufacturing facilities in Dyersburg, Tennessee.

Officials of ERMCO (Electric Research and Manufacturing Cooperative, Inc.) and Arkansas and Tennessee electric cooperative officials met with Tennessee Sen. Bill Hagerty on June 27 to discuss the challenges ERMCO is experiencing due to supply chain, labor and other issues.

ERMCO, a subsidiary of Arkansas Electric Cooperatives, Inc. (AECI), manufactures transformers — electrical devices that transfer energy from one circuit to another — at its Dyersburg, Tennessee, headquarters facility.

Hagerty toured one of ERMCO’s manufacturing facilities during his visit and participated in a lengthy discussion about supply chain and other issues facing the nation’s electrical transformer sector.

“As was made strikingly clear by my visit to ERMCO, stable supply chains are key to secure critical infrastructure, including electric distribution,” Hagerty said. “The gravity of the supply chain/electric distribution relationship affirms the need for legislative solutions that address today’s supply chain crisis and prevent new disruptions going forward.”

According to Tim Mills, CEO of ERMCO, the industry is dealing with extreme challenges with transformers as well as other critical materials.

“We will continue to invest in ERMCO’s capacity output capability and product offerings to address these issues,” he said. “Our made-in-America products are crucial to national security and the evolving distribution grid. ERMCO has doubled our output over the past decade and achieved record levels of production in 2021. Unfortunately, demand for transformers is off the charts. We will continue to add to our growing team to meet the challenges faced by the nation in our effort to remain the premier provider of distribution transformers in America.”

AECI, a statewide services organization, provides products and services to Arkansas’ 17 local electric cooperatives.