Six rural Minnesota businesses were recently awarded USDA Value-Added Producer Grants ranging from $49,000 to $200,000 each. Four of those businesses—Suntava, Living Greens Farms, Carlos Creek Winery, and Shepard’s Way Farms—have worked with or are working with AURI. US Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack recently highlighted how important these rural entrepreneurs are to the US economy by the $25 million the USDA invested in businesses nationwide to help expand and grow their rural operations. USDA Rural Development’s Value-Added Producer Grant program. This program helps agriculture businesses grow by turning raw commodities in value-added products.