What is MarketMaker?
MarketMaker is an web portal designed to connect producers (fishermen and farmers) and consumers with businesses in the food supply chain. The site uses an interactive mapping system coupled with a searchable database to locate producers and businesses with local products for sale while also helping to pinpoint specific markets for agricultural and seafood products based on detailed census data.
What can MarketMaker do for Alabama?
The main purpose of MarketMaker is to provide important information resources that allow members of the food supply chain to connect with each other, develop new markets, and enhance overall profitability. On a local level, MarketMaker can help
- increase the sales of Alabama caught, grown and processed products,
- enhance cooperation within the agricultural and seafood industry, and
- foster development of rural and small businesses.
This means that more profits can be generated for fishermen and farmers and more money can stay in Alabama. MarketMaker is also part of a national web portal, so the availability of Alabama products is made known to consumers all over the country.
Who can benefit from MarketMaker?
Everyone can benefit from MarketMaker. Farmers and seafood producers can use the site to find markets for what they produce (for example, AL wild-caught shrimp, farm-raised tilapia or home-grown tomatoes), while retailers, chefs and household consumers can find local produce, seafood and other products. Farmers, fishermen and other small businesses can also use the site to discover new niche markets for their products, along with nearby processors, wholesalers, and roadside markets.
How do I participate?
Producers (farmers & fishermen) can participate by providing detailed information about their products. To facilitate information gathering, the AL MarketMaker site will be available for registration purposes at al.foodmarketmaker.com.
Institutional and organizational consumers (restaurants, grocery stores, schools, etc.) can participate by encouraging producers in your "foodsheds" to provide the information that will allow you to find a bounty of their products once the site is made public.
Farmers and seafood market organizers and managers can participate by collecting information about their markets and providing it to the MarketMaker team.
The site will launch on October 14, 2011. For more information on how to register or about Alabama MarketMaker, contact Bethany Walton at firstname.lastname@example.org or 251-438-5690.
For information on Alabama MarketMaker you can also contact Dr. Deacue Fields at email@example.com or at
334-844-4931. Please visit al.foodmarketmaker.com.
This program is funded in part by grants provided through the Gulf States Marine Fisheries Commission, Oil Disaster Recovery Program under NOAA Fisheries grant award number NA10NMF4770481