Hazelnuts are a high-value, perennial crop traditionally grown in Europe or states in the coastal Northwest. The potential to produce hazelnuts in Minnesota and Midwestern farms has emerged with the development of a cold-hardy, hybrid variety. These perennials can help support a diversified farming landscape while improving soil and water quality in agricultural areas. Much work has been done in the areas of plant breeding, genetics research, processing, marketing, and related areas by the Forever Green Initiative, Upper Midwest Hazelnut Development Initiative, Badgersett Research Farm, and others. Through the generous support of the Mary Page Community-University Partnership Fund, growers with the Minnesota Hazelnut Foundation were able to hire Amanda Sames, a graduate student researcher, to add to the body of hazelnut research and investigate marketing opportunities for this crop.
Ramping up the Minnesota hazelnut industry through market development (PDF)
This report focuses on the results of a Spring 2015 market potential investigation conducted by Amanda Sames. Seven interviews with chefs and restauranteurs were conducted as well as a focus group consisting of landscape specialists who discussed the use of hazelnut shells as mulch.
These are the presentation slides used to describe the information in the "Ramping up the Minnesota hazelnut industry through market development" report listed above.