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The USDA FAS is among the biggest government customers for Landsat imagery and also accesses information from other sources to stay abreast of daily agricultural changes around the world. Synergy is the key function for continuing to promote the use of remote sensing imagery. The business plan development project is a combined activity of the FAS Production Estimates and Crop Assessment Division (PECAD) involving ASRC Management Services, Global Marketing Insights, and JLB Associates.
The business plan will outline a new approach calling for a single company to oversee satellite imagery acquisition for the FAS, focusing not on obtaining a certain number of scenes per year but on delivering specific information. FAS is hoping that a new approach will help the agency use its budget in a more effective manner by providing information for the FAS/PECAD analysts as opposed to more data.
The new contract, awarded by FAS to ASRC Management Services of Greenbelt, MD, took effect March 1. The initial value of the contract is $2 million to cover the last six months of the 2005 budget year. It also includes one-year options valued at $4 million per year. ASRC Management Services, a subsidiary of Alaska's Arctic Slope Regional Corp., has several contracts in its portfolio for providing various management and support activities at NASA field centers. Global Marketing Insights, Inc. of Cleveland, OH, is responsible for developing the initial business plan to carry them into the future.
FAS will not direct Arctic Slope on which satellite imagery to buy but will specify which information to deliver.
Source: Global Marketing Insights, August 8, 2005