South Dakota Network LLC

06/13/2021 | News release | Distributed by Public on 06/13/2021 09:08

SDN, Dutton join MN initiative launched to grow ag-related businesses

The region boasts an extensive list of ag business concentration and industry dominance amounting to more than 1,000 ag-related businesses. Agriculture drives $1 out of every $3 in the regional economy - generating more than $10 billion annually. Ag is currently the largest business industry segment, with more than $15.3 billion in sales annually.

Four focus areas drive GreenSeam's work:

  1. Business development efforts bolster growth by helping existing businesses grow and stay in the GreenSeam.
  2. Business attraction and creation efforts help position the region for growth by pursuing business relocations and supporting new businesses.
  3. Talent development, retention and attraction efforts through education, research and people help build a strong workforce, which is a challenge in many industries. For example, new agriculture-related programs at the high school and post-secondary schools help students to 'think ag.'
  4. Regional branding and promotion efforts help tell the story of ag and its positive impact.

The five-year goals and outcomes are tangible - and are making progress on the impact it aims to make on the region.

In March, GreenSeam released its second 'State of Ag' report, which provides deeper insights into the future of ag. While other organizations may have studied agriculture, none had a report that focused on the ag industry from a holistic standpoint, Ziegler said. The 2021 report touched on challenges businesses faced due to COVID-19, talent, policy, and more.

'Some of the issues we can address and take on as a goal for our organization. Others we can pass on to others,' Ziegler said.

GreenSeam is a collection of more than traditional ag-related businesses, Ziegler said. The ag economy may start with natural resources and crops, but it ripples into engineering, manufacturing and research, he said.