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Food & Water Solutions

Home to renowned food manufacturing companies and a thriving water technology industry



Food and Agriculture


The Greater MSP region enjoys a robust agriculture, commodities, and food production community. Soybeans, corn and feeding grains are among the leading exports.  From seed technology and development to food manufacturers and packaging companies the region dominates the food production cycle.  Whether involved in growing or trading distribution or manufacturing, food and agribusiness companies prosper in Greater MSP.


Minnesota is ranked as the 3rd largest agricultural exporting state in the U.S.  In 2013, Minnesota’s total agricultural exports reached a second record-high of $8 billion. Top export commodities were soybeans, feed, corn, pork, and wheat – which accounted for almost two-thirds of the state’s total agricultural exports. From 2000 to 2013, Minnesota’s agricultural exports grew by more than 250 percent – much higher than the national growth of 180 percent.  Exports are crucial to Minnesota’s agricultural economy and contribute over one-third of Minnesota’s total agricultural sales.  In Minnesota, more than 67,000 jobs are directly or indirectly related to agricultural exports. 


Six of the world's top 30 food & agricultural companies are headquartered in the area
General Mills Land O'Lakes Cargill
CHS Davisco Michael Foods
Associated Milk Producers MN Soybean Growers Association MN Corn Growers Association
MN Agriculture Grown Council Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy American Crystal Sugar
Hormel Mosaic CH Robinson


Educational institutions such as the University of Minnesota and Minnesota State University offer vocational, undergraduate and graduate programs in food science and technology. Research facilities at the University of Minnesota’s Department of Food Science and Nutrition provide state-of-the-art equipment and instruments for food analysis and processing. Another notable facility at the University of Minnesota is the Hormel Institute, a world recognized leader in the scientific field showing that dietary factors prevent and control cancer development. Minnesota’s agricultural sector is the backbone to its strong food processing industries.


Water technology


Nestled in the central section of the United States amid over 10,000 lakes and the Mississippi River, Greater MSP has emerged as the global leader for water technology and will continue to grow with investment in water technology increasing to 40% over the next three years. In fact, Greater MSP company, Ecolab Inc., made Forbes magazine’s 2015 list of The World’s Most Innovative Companies.


We boast a large community of thought leaders and closely networked companies working in a wide range of areas including hydrofracking, desalination, agriculture, water reuse, water security, filtration, conservation, and waste water treatment among others.  Job growth in Greater MSP is poised to outpace many of our competing regions at 9% over the next 10 years. Most recently, Greater MSP ranked 9th in the nation for water-technology related exports, our largest international export markets include: Canada, China and South Korea.


“The Greater MSP Region is really the “Silicon Valley of Water” – a place where many leading global companies in water filtration, flow technology, and advanced systems and solutions call home.”

-Randall J. Hogan, Chairman and CEO, Pentair, Ltd


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