Glasgow’s SpanTech competing for ‘Coolest Thing Made in Kentucky’

Published 1:42 pm Thursday, March 14, 2024

By Jack Dobbs, Bowling Green Daily News

SpanTech, a Glasgow-based company manufacturing conveyor systems and material handling goods, is in the running for the Coolest Thing Made in Kentucky Tournament after one of its creations helped to end the nationwide baby formula shortage.

The device is called the “Outrunner Spiral.” Tiffany Somerville, co-CEO of Spantech, said the machine’s spiral shape allows product to move up or down a line more efficiently than a standard conveyor.

“Something that might take 100 feet to do we can do in 25 square feet,” Somerville said.

She said during the formula shortage, the baby food company ByHeart Formula opened a new factory in Washington state, the first formula factory to open in 25 years. She said ByHeart called SpanTech during the shortage and needed four, 30 foot tall spirals “as quickly as they could get them.”

She said SpanTech was contacted by the Department of Homeland Security and asked how quickly the company could produce the spirals.

“It normally takes us 12 to 16 weeks to get the order, get it designed and get it built,” Somerville said. “We got all four built within six weeks.”

The Corvette won the Coolest Thing Made In Kentucky contest in 2023, and SpanTech is facing competition from various different products this year including AirHeads Candy, Post-it notes, Makers Mark Bourbon and the Ford Super Duty pickup truck.

Somerville said SpanTech entered the contest “a couple years ago,” and is optimistic about SpanTech’s chances this year.

“I think this year we’ve got a really good chance,” she said.

Votes can be cast up to five times a day for any of the different products in the contest. Sixteen products with the most votes will be chosen as “Fan Favorites” on March 17 and will compete until a winner is announced in late April.

Votes can be cast at