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Upcoming Event to Highlight Food and Ag Innovations New Uses Forum 2019: Accelerating Ag Innovation and Investment

Erik Evans
(612) 704-1120

SAINT PAUL, Minn. (Feb. 26, 2019) – The Agricultural Utilization Research Institute (AURI), Compeer Financial and Georgetown University’s Rural Opportunity Initiative are partnering to conduct the 3rd annual New Uses Forum. The theme for this year’s event, which will be held on March 27-28, 2019 at the Minneapolis Marriott West, is Accelerating Ag Innovation and Investment.

The event brings together some of the most knowledgeable voices on topics related to food and ag innovation. This year’s conference will also focus on value-added opportunities, rural development and financial investment interests.

The engaging forum will feature expert speakers, panelists and break-out sessions to explore practical approaches for advancing innovative ideas to commercial markets to help create new economic benefits for the agricultural industry.

The multifaceted programming features a wide range of content and perspectives, including innovations in new uses, agriculture processing, new or expanded market possibilities, novel crops, investment trends, benefits available through incubators and accelerators and more.

Tom Vilsack, the past USDA Secretary of Agriculture and current CEO of the U.S. Dairy Export Council will deliver the keynote address March 28 and Rajiv Singh, past CEO of RaboBank North America Wholesale will kick off the event March 27.

In addition, participants will have ample opportunity to connect with resources and share experiences with their fellow attendees via networking breaks to advance innovative food and agricultural ideas throughout the two days.

Industry and media attendees can expect to learn and discuss trends regarding agricultural innovation and investment. Programming spans finance opportunities, entrepreneurial startup experiences, regional resources, reverse pitch partnership opportunities and more. To register, learn more information and see a detailed schedule of events, visit

To reserve a complimentary media pass for the New Uses Forum, contact Erik Evans at or at 612-704-1120.

About AURI
The Agricultural Utilization Research Institute’s mission is to foster long-term economic benefit through value-added agricultural products. It accomplishes this by using science and technology to help develop new uses for agricultural products. It partners with businesses and entrepreneurs to generate economic impact in Minnesota communities by helping businesses take advantage of innovative opportunities in four focus areas: biobased products, renewable energy, coproducts and food. AURI provides a broad range of services, including applied research and development, scientific assistance and a targeted network of resources to develop value-added uses for crops and coproducts.

About Compeer Financial
Compeer Financial is a member-owned Farm Credit cooperative serving and supporting agriculture and rural communities. The $20.3 billion organization provides loans, leases, risk management and other financial services throughout 144 counties in Illinois, Minnesota and Wisconsin. Based in the Upper Midwest, Compeer Financial exists to champion the hopes and dreams of rural America, while providing personalized service and expertise to clients and the agriculture industry.

Compeer Financial is the third largest cooperative of the Farm Credit System, a nationwide network of lending institutions supporting agriculture and rural communities with reliable, consistent credit and financial services. Learn more about Compeer Financial’s patronage program.

About the Rural Opportunity Initiative Center
The Rural Opportunity Initiative (ROI) aims to serve rural American communities by driving financially and socially-sustainable rural development. It’s been well-established that rural businesses lag behind their urban counterparts in terms of venture and early growth capital investment and accessing debt and operating capital. At the same time, private investors are eager to identify and support rural growth opportunities, but most are not aware of what’s available, and often the deals are misaligned with traditional investment models. The investor experience in U.S. rural communities in some ways mirrors that of impact investors in search of deals overseas in developing regions, where the amount of capital is more robust than the pipeline of deals, and a mismatch exists between the levels and kinds of returns investors seek, and what small and growing businesses can offer.