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State to add dairy research and teaching center

WILLMAR, Minn. -- The Minnesota Department of Agriculture this week announced the formation of a new Dairy Research, Teaching and Consumer Education Authority whose main task will be to oversee the development of a dairy research and teaching facility. Preliminary estimates to develop the dairy research and education center range from $30 million to $35 million.

The state has set a deadline of Aug. 27 for applications to be on the authority. The nine members will advise the Minnesota Commissioner of Agriculture, the University of Minnesota and the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities System on the design, development and operation of the dairy facility, which will combine research, teaching and consumer education. Appointments will be made by Gov. Mark Dayton in consultation with Minnesota Agriculture Commissioner Dave Frederickson.

Steve Renquist, executive director of the Kandiyohi County and City Willmar Economic Development Commission said Kandiyohi County should be a strong contender for the facility, but will likely face competition.