The Marketing Services Division (MSD) works to improve market access for producers and develop new markets through its three main roles as a researcher, a convener, and a technical assistance provider. In USDA’s vision, local food producers, markets, and communities have easy access to ideas, innovations, and research in order to grow and sustain a productive business. This information ensures that opportunities for U.S. food producers are readily available and communities are equipped to successfully grow and sell regionally produced foods, while also supporting increased access to locally produced foods.
Researcher and Data Provider
MSD’s goal is to explore common challenges that local and regional food system stakeholders face by providing research and data that supports market access and transparency. As a researcher, MSD works with USDA agencies and external partners to explore challenges and opportunities related to market access and development in the local and regional food system community.
Technical Assistance Provider
As a technical assistance provider, MSD works to share learnings from its research and grantees with all interested stakeholders, including grantees, farmers market managers, producers, and academia.
As a convener, MSD seeks to provide access to the most relevant and up-to-date information available on local and regional food systems. The team acts as a central node for networks to collaborate across the local and regional food system sector. MSD offers a platform to unify and amplify the work being done at the local and regional levels.
Current Resources and Services
- Local and Regional Food Systems Response to COVID
- Seeds of Success: Digging into the Farmers Market and Local Food Promotion Program
- Local Food Research and Publications
- Food Facility Design
- Local Food Directories
- Grant Programs
- Subscribe to From the Ground Up to receive news and notes on AMS’ local and regional food systems work.
USDA, Agricultural Marketing Service
Transportation and Marketing Programs
Marketing Services Division
1400 Independence Ave., SW
Room 4509-S, Stop 0269
Washington, DC 20250-0269
Ken Keck, Director
Christina Conell, Deputy Director
Ronald Batcher, Architect, AIA
Yvette Garcia, Agricultural Marketing Specialist
Karl Hacker, Economist
Jeff O'Hara, Agricultural Marketing Specialist
Sasha Pokrovskaya, Architect
Edward Ragland, Economist
Samantha Schaffstall, Agricultural Marketing Specialist
LaTasha Thomas, Management & Program Analyst
Americo J. Vega-Labiosa, Agricultural Marketing Specialist