GreenSeam Rural Forum Draws Largest Crowd Ever

Mankato’s annual Rural Forum certainly wasn’t showing its age on Nov. 30 as a record crowd gathered at the Mayo Clinic Health System Event Center. “We had over 300 people […]

Date set for 40th annual Rural Forum presented by GreenSeam

Click here to watch the full video on KEYC News Now. 

GreenSeam is proud to announce the 40th annual Rural Forum, which will take place on Thursday, November 30, 2023, at the Mayo Clinic Health System Event Center in Mankato, MN. Under the theme “Future Forward: Empowering Rural America Through Innovation,” this milestone event will gather current and future leaders from the public and private sectors to discuss the future of rural economies in southern Minnesota. Tickets are available at  The 40th annual Rural Forum is presented by Gislason & Hunter LLP.

The Rural Forum is GreenSeam’s premier event and has been a vital platform for fostering discussions about rural development and public policy since its creation. This year, the focus is on innovation as a means to empower rural America, addressing the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.

“We’re excited to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Rural Forum, with a focus on the future,” said Sam Ziegler, Director of GreenSeam. “We believe that the continued prosperity of our rural communities will depend on collaborative and innovative solutions, and GreenSeam is committed to creating a platform for those important discussions.”

The Rural Forum is open to a wide audience, including food and ag business leaders, students, and public officials. The event will feature networking, dinner, and remarks from experts on the technologies that are transforming rural communities.

Event Speakers

  1. Keynote Address by Dr. Robert Reiter: Dr. Robert Reiter, Head of Research & Development for Bayer’s Crop Science Division, will deliver the keynote address, sharing insights on innovations in agriculture. He has over 30 years of experience in discovering, developing, and delivering innovative R&D solutions in the agricultural space.
  2. Energy Panel: Pam Gorman Prochaska, General Manager of Xcel Energy’s Nuclear Fleet Operations and Brian Werner, Executive Director for MN Bio-Fuels Association will have a moderated discussion on the future of sustainable energy.
  3. Legislative Panel: Public officials and policymakers will dive into the policies affecting rural communities.

New ag exhibit coming to Children’s Museum in September

MANKATO — A new Children’s Museum of Southern Minnesota exhibit opening in September will highlight modern agricultural practices in the region.

The museum announced the Taylor Farm exhibit Wednesday, which is funded by the Glen A. Taylor Foundation.

The exhibit will feature a tractor, corn field, barn and pig sections. Children can go on virtual adventures through farm fields on the tractor.

It will open to the public Sept. 21, with the museum to be closed between Sept. 11-14 for installation.

The partnership between the foundation and museum is about “fostering innovative learning experiences,” stated Taylor Corporation Chairman and founder Glen Taylor in a news release.

“This exhibit represents a captivating blend of modern agriculture, interactive exploration, and cultural heritage,” he said. “By enabling children to engage with the essence of agricultural practices, we hope to inspire a profound appreciation for our region’s farming legacy and the vital role it plays. Together, with the museum, we are excited to contribute to the growth and enrichment of our community’s educational landscape.”

The museum is thrilled to partner with the foundation to bring the exhibit to life, said Louise Dickmeyer, the museum CEO, in the release.

“Our aim is to provide children with a deeper understanding of the rich agricultural heritage of southern Minnesota,” she stated. “With its interactive elements and engaging design, the exhibit will inspire curiosity, spark imaginations and create lasting memories for our visitors.”

GreenSeam Director Sam Ziegler helped the collaboration happen and described the exhibit as a testament to the power of collaborative conversations and shared visions.

“Our discussions have come to fruition through this exhibit opening,” he stated. “This exhibit eloquently symbolizes our steadfast commitment to propelling the agricultural narrative forward within our region. We are proud to contribute to such an exhibit that represents the multifaceted GreenSeam region that boasts pork production and advanced tractor manufacturing.”

Click here to read the full article on The Free Press.

GreenSeam helping ag businesses attract non-U.S. citizen workers

The Free Press

MANKATO — GreenSeam has launched a program aimed at connecting small food and agricultural business in the region to technical services for attracting non-U.S. citizens as job candidates.

Through its Global Workforce Program, GreenSeam is offering up to $3,000 for the cost of legal fees and human resources consulting fees for qualifying businesses seeking international talent.

If a business has 500 or fewer full-time equivalent employees, any affiliation with Region Nine counties (Blue Earth, Brown, Faribault, Le Sueur, Martin, Nicollet, Sibley, Waseca and Watonwan) and any connection to food or agriculture, they may qualify for support.


Financial support includes two fully paid 45-minute sessions with GreenSeam’s human resources expert and immigration attorney partners, valued at $1,000. For any additional sessions, GreenSeam will cover 25% of fees incurred, up to $2,000.

GreenSeam’s 2023 State of Ag Survey identified a shortage of talent as the primary inhibitor of business growth in food and ag industries, and this program was developed in response.

Applications will be accepted through September on a first come, first served basis.

Apply at:

Click here to view The Free Press article.

Pork Power 5K Presented by MN Pork Board

For those looking for fun, all we have to say is BACON! Whether you are looking for a PR, or bacon stops, you’ll be hooked. Each finisher receives a medal and post race goodies (including Pork Producer products!). This one-of-a-kind race is complete with a bacon station, pork treats and pig medals. It’s a fun Friday event that you and your friends will love.

Pork Power 5k Info and Sign-up

Cybersecurity with Eide Bailly

October is cybersecurity month, and we’re getting a jump start on it this year! Here are some tools, resources, and free webinars that we wanted to share with you and the GreenSeam members.

EideBailly Full Article

Global Workforce Opportunities | International Students & Graduates

On October 6th, 30 attendees from across the region gathered to learn how to navigate the legal process, how to attract, hire, and support international students and graduates.
Kim Phillips, Senior HR Manager at AGCO Corp in Jackson (GreenSeam Investor) shared information about her experience, recommendations to others, and the overwhelming return on investment they have found by hiring international student and graduate professionals. 

Video Recap

Summer Sales of Unleaded 88 are Strong

Reported monthly sales of Unleaded 88 in Minnesota reached new heights this summer and early fall, state data show.

According to the Minnesota Department of Commerce, reported sales of Unleaded 88 were over 9.2 million gallons in July. Reported sales were over 9.5 million gallons in August and over 9.3 million gallons in September.

Before July, reported Unleaded 88 sales in Minnesota had never reached 9 million gallons. In May, reported sales were over 8.7 million gallons, and in June, they were over 8.9 million gallons. Those were the first months in which Minnesota passed the 8 million gallon threshold.

In total, reported Unleaded 88 sales in Minnesota for the first nine months of 2022 were 76.3 million gallons. For comparison, Minnesota’s total reported Unleaded 88 sales in 2021 were 87.1 million gallons. That was a state record for annual Unleaded 88 sales.

About Unleaded 88

Unleaded 88, also known as E15, is a blend of 15% ethanol and 85% gasoline. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has approved the fuel for use in all model year 2001 and newer vehicles.

Compared to regular unleaded gasoline, Unleaded 88 reduces greenhouse gas emissions. It also costs less than regular unleaded; it’s typically 5 cents to 40 cents per gallon less, on average.

Through farmers’ investment in the Minnesota corn check-off, Minnesota Corn has helped dozens of fueling stations upgrade to equipment compatible with Unleaded 88 and higher biofuel blends. In 2021, for example, Minnesota Corn pledged $1 million to a state biofuel infrastructure grant program. The state legislature allocated $6 million to the program during the 2021 legislative session.

On Oct. 1, 2022, the Minnesota Department of Agriculture announced that 44 fueling stations are receiving funding through the program.

In addition, Minnesota Corn has continued promoting Unleaded 88 to consumers across the state through the Better Fuel Initiative. For the past two years, the campaign has featured KFAN “Power Trip” morning show co-host and producer Chris Hawkey.

Hawkey has appeared on Better Fuel billboards and in TV and radio ads that have played statewide.

Unleaded 88 is available at over 400 Minnesota fueling stations. To find a station with Unleaded 88 near you, visit

Full Article

Opportunity: St Olaf Consulting Group

This student-led organization partners with organizations to provide data-driven insights while their analysts benefit from professional development and academic credit. The typical project length is eight weeks with each team committing over 300 hours. Projects begin with conversations between the client and an engagement manager to determine the scope, deliverables, and timeline of the project.

St. Olaf Consulting Group Prospectus


The St. Olaf Consulting Group is comprised of motivated undergraduate students who are interested in pursuing careers in management consulting. Our goal is to provide a tangible impact for our clients, while simultaneously enabling our analysts to gain real-world consulting experience. Each consulting team consists of 4-6 analysts and an engagement manager, with support from a faculty mentor (MBA) from St. Olaf’s Piper Center for Vocation and Career. Analysts are selected from the college’s brightest and most dedicated students through a competitive application and interview process to ensure our work is to the highest standards. Our analysts have a wide range of backgrounds and majors ranging from the social sciences to STEM. Analysts are also given training and development opportunities to ensure they possess the necessary technical skills for each specific project. Engagement managers are selected from the most successful analysts and possess significant outside business and leadership experience. Our alumni have gone on to careers at leading consulting firms including Deloitte, Boston Consulting Group, and McKinsey & Company.


The St. Olaf Consulting Group provides our clients with data-driven insights while our analysts benefit from professional development and academic credit. The typical project length is eight weeks with each team committing over 300 hours. Projects begin with conversations between the client and an engagement manager to determine the scope, deliverables, and timeline of the project. Typical deliverables include excel models, competitive benchmarking, strategy planning, and a slide deck synthesizing overall recommendations to be presented to the client. During the project, the client meets at least twice with the team to introduce the project and receive final recommendations at its conclusion. Throughout the project, engagement managers serve as a liaison between the client and the team to gather available data and clarify project details.

Previous Engagements

• Developed a tailored product launch strategy for a low-vision stationary company, covering pricing, distribution, and marketing.
• Performed financial modeling and projected costs for a startup company in the aquaculture industry, positioning it to attract investors.
• Identified strategies to optimize staffing levels for a top technology company.
• Analyzed discounting the prices of consulting services for a major technology company and designed a hybrid discount and value-based pricing model.


If your business is interested in working with the St. Olaf Consulting Group, please contact the group’s presidents Noah Mock ( and Ben Steil ( 

St. Olaf Consulting Group Prospectus

GreenSeam Testimonies at the Capitol

Wednesday, President and Director of GreenSeam, Sam Ziegler was at the State Capitol testifying on behalf of GreenSeam. He was joined by Senator Frentz, Troy Schmidke founder of Earth Scout, Ethan Dado, the first ag teach at Mankato Area Public Schools, and FFA Chapter President and student Brynn Bohlke. This team turned heads with their powerful testimonies. Thank you legislators for your continued financial support, staff, and everyone involved!

Hear the Testimonies