GRAND RAPIDS, Minn. (June 23, 2021) — MDI is offering significant incentives as it seeks to hire several dozen people across its Grand Rapids and Cohasset production facilities. Commercial business has increased, and more is anticipated once the organization’s new polypropylene extruder comes online at its Grand Rapids facility later this year, which will allow the nonprofit manufacturer to expand its offerings and provide more packaging solutions to customers. Nearly half of MDI’s employees live with a disability.

“After a year of unpredictable business and increased safety concerns from COVID-19, we are thrilled to be hiring at all of our facilities statewide,” said Eric Black, president and CEO of MDI. “We provide an inclusive work environment and put our employees first, with support services for all staff and competitive wages and benefits. Our hope is to continue to provide the empowerment and self confidence that comes with employment for anyone in our communities looking for a job.”

As the state continues to suffer from a labor shortage, MDI is offering a $1,000 hiring bonus for full time employment in key positions. MDI’s existing wages and benefits include a competitive starting wage based on experience, plus a robust benefit package including paid-time off.

“Our focus at MDI is to provide the best employee experience possible,” said Jeanne Eglinton, director of employment services at MDI. “These additional incentives to come work with us are a reflection of how we view our employees and prioritize our workforce’s wellbeing.”

Also fueling the need for more workers is the newly purchased polypropylene extruder, which will create sheets of material that can be sold to other businesses and used to make boxes, totes and trays for commercial customers. With this new equipment, MDI will be able to produce up to five million sheets per year and create 70 jobs across northern Minnesota over the next 10 years.

The Blandin Foundation donated $675,000 and the Minnesota Department of Iron Range Resources and Rehabilitation (IRRRB) provided an infrastructure grant of $250,000 to go toward the cost of the project, which ultimately cost a total of $2.9 million. The extruder is anticipated to be online and fully functional by the end of 2021.
To learn more about MDI and to view open job positions, visit