Discuss Expanding Website to Link Agriculture Producers and Consumers
MarketMaker Website Helps Link Farmers to New Markets Throughout New York
Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton met this week with members from the MarketMaker group, a team of individuals from the University of Illinois that has been working with the Cornell Cooperative Extension to develop an interactive mapping system that will help link producers and markets for locally grown agricultural products. Senator Clinton has been working with MarketMaker to help develop this project into a national database to expand her "Farm to Fork" initiative.
"From grains, to fruits, vegetables and other specialty crops, New York farmers produce an amazing array of agricultural products. With the help of the MarketMaker team we now have an innovative online database that helps expand the reach of our small farmers and rural communities to take advantage of improved distribution infrastructure and greater market access for their products in New York. I am proud to have had the opportunity to work with MarketMaker and the Cornell University Cooperative Extension to help our farmers connect and grow, and I will look forward to helping them roll this initiative out on a national level."
Senator Clinton met with MarketMaker last September during her Agriculture Advisory Board meeting where they presented New York's MarketMaker website, which was developed and is directed by Cornell University Cooperative Extension/NYC as a resource for all businesses in the food supply chain. Working with colleagues at Cornell and the New York State Agriculture and Markets Department, Cornell University Cooperative Extension/NYC staff will gather information and assist agricultural entrepreneurs, value-added retailers, processors and niche food enterprises to fully utilize the potential of MarketMaker (See - http://nymarketmaker.cornell.edu/).
The New York MarketMaker web site presently lists a total of 1,608 producers and 217 wineries, and represents participation from 56 of the state's counties. These numbers make New York the state with the most producer participation in the entire Marketmaker system. The MarketMaker site for New York state averages 30,000 hits a month. To date, MarketMaker has completed eight online training sessions with attendees from 13 counties including, Clinton, Columbia, Cortland, Dutchess, Jefferson, Madison, Monroe, Niagara, Orange, Tompkins, Tioga, Oneida, Lewis. The training sessions allow the participants to be able to observe some commonly used features being used and hear about how they might be helpful to their marketing research efforts.
Senator Clinton's "Farm to Fork" initiative was designed to promote and conserve the amazing diversity of New York State's agriculture and to connect farmers and producers with consumers, retailers and restaurateurs across the state and in New York City and beyond. Her "Farm to Fork" initiative is part of a long-term effort on Senator Clinton's part to establish the infrastructure that is vital to the effective marketing of upstate product to the downstate market and to promote upstate New York agriculture as a whole. As an avid promoter of New York's agriculture industry, Senator Clinton has held meetings to join growers and producers from across the state with key distributors and wholesalers, and has taken restaurateurs and buyers on tours to experience the best of what New York's growers and producers have to offer.