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NRRI Impact

Flag with Minnesota Seal sticking out of scattered paper currency.

How does NRRI make a positive impact for Minnesota?

Here are some examples, but to read about the latest projects and partnerships, check out our Recent News page! Or watch this short video with testimonials from a couple of our project partners. 

Examples: Environmental Expertise

In 2015, NRRI delivered 239 pages of 15 years and $7.7 million of research on the Great Lakes coastal zones. Results included close to 100 peer-reviewed papers, countless metrics and methodologies, plus three tools to postulate and confirm the condition of the entire Great Lakes shoreline.

A 2015 report to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources guides foresters in methods that can help conserve the unique habitat of Minnesota's Agassiz Lowlands, which is home to many threatened bird species.

Examples: NRRI Business Starts

Northern Contours, a start-up cabinet components company in 1994. With NRRI assistance, the company today employs about 400.

Epicurean/Loll Designs, started in 1997 in Duluth as a skate park ramp business called True Ride. With NRRI assistance, the company changed product lines and expanded into three thriving businesses employing approximately 100 local people.

Examples: NRRI Business Improvements

Top That! By Loni (International Falls, MN), started as a home sewing business in 2010. With NRRI assistance, the business moved into a manufacturing space, increased productivity and upgraded its product line to customized boat covers. A second employee was added in 2012.

Aluminum Cabinet Company (Duluth, MN), received NRRI small business assistance to get started in 2007, slowed considerably in 2008, but received Lean Manufacturing assistance in 2010 and business is thriving again. It employs three people.

American Peat Technology (Aitkin, MN), founded in 2003, began to expand their product line using NRRI chemistry expertise. Today the company employs 26 people in rural Minnesota.

Ryan's Rustic Railings (Orr, MN) when Ryan Holman was ready to add more automation to his business, NRRI helped him identify the best new technology on the market -- a rounding machine from Germany. Today, about 80 percent of his product is run through that machine and in 2012 he added a large new facility to handle the added business.

Student Impact

Each year, NRRI employs as many as 70 undergraduate and graduate research assistants who get hands-on experiences in solving real-world problems. These experiences result in tremendous opportunities for the students when they graduate.