Bureau of Education and Communication
Overview of Bureau Activities for 1996 -1997
The Bureau of Education and Communication is responsible for educating and informing consumers and coordinating the communication efforts of the Department through news releases, brochures and other publications, video and radio programming, exhibits and displays, graphics presentations, the Internet, CD-ROMs, and other multimedia productions. Bureau productions are a major component of the Florida Agricultural Promotional Campaign (FAPC), which assists the states agricultural community in expanding markets and promoting and selling Florida-grown products.
During fiscal year 1996-97, approximately 120 press releases informed the public about various regulatory and promotional activities of the Department. Additional publications regularly produced and distributed by the bureau include: the Departments Annual Report; the Consumer Interest newsletter, which deals with consumer education and product safety issues; the Consumer Watch product safety and recall notices; and Open Lines, the Departments employee newsletter. In addition, the bureau produced numerous brochures, booklets and other printed materials pertaining to the varied activities of the Departments 11 divisions.
The Florida Market Bulletin is a primary vehicle for keeping Floridaa farming community informed of issues affecting the states agriculture industry and the Department. This monthly agricultural newspaper has been published regularly by the Department since 1917. In addition to disseminating agricultural news and information, the Florida Market Bulletin provides a forum by which Florida residents can advertise to buy or sell agriculturally related items through its classified advertising section. During fiscal year 1996-97, more than 6,100 classified ads appeared in the Market Bulletin, which currently serves approximately 15,000 Florida farming households.
The Bureau of Education and Communication produces and disseminates informational, educational and promotional audio and video productions, such as television and radio public service announcements, radio programming, television news segments and documentaries, and internal training videos. Video productions during fiscal year 1996-97 covered a variety of regulatory and promotional issues.
Among the agricultural producer assistance videos produced during fiscal year 1996-97 were: "Marketing Tropical Fruit," which targets produce retailers with information about how to effectively market tropical fruit, and "Florida Hard Clams: The New Bounty," which explains the aquacultural enterprise of raising hard clams in leased coastal waters.
The bureau also produced a documentary video, "1996 Agricultural-Environmental Awards," which details the progressive environmental efforts of two Florida farming operations. "Floridas State Forests" promoted the 60th anniversary of the state forest system and focused on environmental, recreational and land management aspects of the forests.
The bureau also produced several television public service announcements including: "Florida Seafood: A Part of Your Life," which promotes the states seafood industry; "Auto Repair Fraud," which alerts consumers to the potential for fraud and how to report it; "Country of Origin," which encourages consumers to know where their food originates and to look for the Fresh from Florida label; "Ag Tag," which promotes the availability of Floridas agricultural license plate; and a series of Medfly PSAs that explained the serious threat posed by the Mediterranean fruit fly infestation in Central Florida and detailed the eradication program.
The Bureau of Education and Communication also responds to inquiries from the public, and mails out publications and other informational and promotional materials upon request.