Calling it "the most significant legislation" that he has seen in his six years as governor, Governor Rudy Perpich signed into law in June, 1987, a bill that would spend $38 million to further economic development throughout the state. The heart of the legislation is the formation of the Greater Minnesota Corp., a public corporation which will use state money to promote research and product development in the state. The corporation will use $3.5 million to establish an Agricultural Utilization Research Institute, that will develop new uses for the state's farm products.
The Agricultural Utilization Research Institute was originally a Greater Minnesota Corporation (GMC) operation but was given increased independence by the 1989 Legislature. At that time, there was concern that GMC wouldn't give agriculture adequate priority. But in 1990, when the agricultural institute sought independent funding from the Legislature, it was turned down. By October, 1990, the agencies were back in a cooperative mode.
AURI has facilities in Crookston, Marshall, St. Paul, and Waseca.