USDA AMS seeks focus group participants for new market system

USDA AMS seeks focus group participants for new market system

Market Analysis & Reporting Services is new technology to collect and distribute market information.

USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service is moving forward with its new initiative to provide unbiased market data to users in a digital format.

Related: USDA enters the digital age

Called the Market Analysis & Reporting Services (MARS), this dynamic, innovative technology will assist USDA Market News in collecting and distributing information electronically from remote locations by combining reporting from all commodity areas (Livestock, Cotton, Specialty Crops, and Dairy) into a single platform.

AMS plans to use MARS to collect and distribute market information. (Photo: givaga/Thinkstock)

This modernization effort will improve the transparency, speed, accuracy and flexibility of this service and allow Market News to continue to expand its services to agricultural market participants.  To ensure that that changes meet users’ needs, AMS is conducting focus groups and welcomes participation.

The main purpose of the focus groups is to engage small groups of targeted users to learn about their wants and needs for any public-facing functionality of MARS.  Focus group participants should plan to attend 3-5 webinars.  Each webinar will begin with a presentation of MARS mockup screens and descriptions of potential functionality.  The focus groups will provide an avenue to gather details on needed capabilities and help prioritize them for implementation.

After the initial focus group webinars are complete, AMS will invite participants to test the functionality of MARS to provide the agency with information on how it works and how to improve it.  To find out how you may participate, email AMS mailto:[email protected].

Source: USDA AMS

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