MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WIAT) — Gov. Kay Ivey recognized seven companies Wednesday for their role in making Alabama exports a more than $20 billion industry in the state.

The Trade Excellence Awards were awarded to businesses spanning several industries, including Continental Aerospace Technologies in Mobile, Nelson Brothers LLC in Birmingham and Icubate, Inc. in Huntsville.

Gov. Ivey said the state’s exports in 2021 hit $20.9 billion, a 20 percent increase from 2020.

She also signed a proclamation to recognize National Small Business Development Center Day.

“The simple fact is that folks everywhere want what we have in Alabama. Our forestry products, plastics, rubber and food products, and the list goes on,” Ivey said.

Ivey said the state’s top export is automobiles and the top destination for Alabama products is Germany, followed by Canada.