US Army Awards Winchester Contract to Run Lake City Ammunition Plant

    Lake City Army Ammunition Plant in Independence, Missouri (US Army)

    Olin Winchester have been awarded the contract to run the US Army’s premier ammunition manufacturing plant. Lake City Ammunition Plant in Independence, Missouri has produced small arms ammunition since the beginning of World War Two.

    The plant was established and run for decades by Remington until the Olin Corporation took over for the first time in 1985. Since 2001 the plant has been run by Orbital ATK, but from October 2020 Olin Winchester will take over the running of the site. Winchester entered the running to manage the 3,935 acres Lake City site back in May 2018. While the plant is run by a civilian company it is overseen by the US Army’s Joint Munitions Command.

    The plant can produce ammunition ranging from 5.56x45mm through to 20mm. In the future, Lake City is likely to play a major role in manufacturing the ammunition for the NGSW, if adopted.  The contract, according to GovTribe, is worth a massive $8.3 billion and is set to run through to 2029, with Olin Winchester responsible for production, maintenance and upgrade of the plant over the next 7-9 years.

    An aerial view of the near 4,000 acre Lake City Army Ammunition Plant (US Army)

    Here’s Olin Winchester’s statement on the contract award:

    Olin Corporation (NYSE: OLN) announced today that its ammunition division, Olin Winchester, LLC (“Winchester”), has been selected by the U.S. Army to operate and manage the Lake City Army Ammunition Plant in Independence, Missouri.  Following a one-year transition period, Winchester will assume full operational control of the Lake City plant on October 1, 2020.  The contract has an initial term of seven years and may be extended by the U.S. Army for up to three additional years.

    “Winchester is honored to have been selected by the Army to operate, maintain and modernize this unique, strategic asset of the U.S. Government’s munitions industrial base,” said Brett Flaugher, President of Winchester. “Our team is fully prepared and 100% committed to the safe, reliable, and responsible operation of Lake City, in the best interest of and service to the U.S. Military.”

    Winchester is one of the world’s most recognizable and respected brands. Currently in its 153rd year of operation and 89th year as part of Olin, Winchester is a premier developer and manufacturer of small-caliber ammunition for sale to domestic and international militaries, law enforcement agencies, and commercial distributors and retailers. Winchester has been providing ammunition to the U.S. Military since World War I and is currently the U.S. Army’s largest producer of small-caliber ammunition outside of the Lake City plant.  Winchester’s manufacturing operations are located in East Alton, Illinois and Oxford, Mississippi, with an international distribution facility in Geelong, Victoria, Australia.

    Here’s the Department of Defense’s award notice:

    Olin Winchester LLC, East Alton, Illinois, was awarded a $28,313,481 fixed-price with economic-price-adjustment contract for production of small caliber ammunition and the operation, maintenance, and modernization of the Lake City Army Ammunition Plant. Bids were solicited via the internet with three received. Work will be performed in Lake City Army Ammunition Plant in Independence, Missouri, with an estimated completion date of Sept. 27, 2029. U.S. Army Contracting Command, Rock Island Arsenal, Illinois is the contracting activity (W52P1J-19-F-0742).

    Update: The value of the total contract listed on other US government sites, including FedbizzOps and GovTribe, values the entire contract at $8.3 billion.

    Matthew Moss

    Matthew Moss – Assistant Editor.

    Matt is a British historian specialising in small arms development and military history. He has written for a variety of publications in both the US and UK he also runs, a blog that explores the history, development and use of firearms. Matt is also co-founder of, a new video series on historically significant small arms.

    Reach Matt at: [email protected]