Bureau of Education and Communication
Overview of Bureau Activities for 1998-1999
Florida Market Bulletin
Print, Radio and Video Production
During fiscal year 1998-99, the bureau issued approximately 125 press releases to inform 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 bureau also responds to inquiries from the public, and mails out publications and other informational and promotional materials upon request.
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, documentaries, and internal training videos. Agricultural producer assistance videos produced during fiscal year 1998-99 dealt with a variety of topics, including: the economic impact of Floridas wood products industry and the importance of properly managing the states forests; alligator products retail sales training assistance; the expansion of a greens-producing farming cooperative assisted by the Departments AgVenture Services program; and preparation of Florida farm-raised clams. The 1998 Agricultural-Environmental Leadership Awards documentary details the progressive environmental efforts of the Longino Ranch in Arcadia and V&W Farms, Inc., in Avon Park. The bureau also produced television public service announcements on such issues as: forest products and properly managed forests; wildfire/arson prevention; fireworks safety, and the Florida State Fair. Radio programming included promotional spots for Florida strawberries, tomatoes, Florida winter fruits and vegetables, and the Florida State Fair, as well as public service announcements promoting the WIC/Farmers Market Nutrition Program.
Marketing Florida Agriculture on the World Wide Web
An educational web site for students is also found at www.fl-ag.com. "Planet Ag" contains information to assist students in selecting a topic and carrying out their science fair project. The site provides students with an explanation of the scientific method, from choosing a topic and stating a hypothesis, to deciding on a procedure and recording the results. It also provides a sample project for students to review, a look at previous winners projects, and links to other agriculture- and science-related sites. Planet Ag also provides an overview of the importance of agriculture to Florida, and examines career possibilities in agricultural science, offering suggestions to students on courses to take in high school and college. The goal of Planet Ag is to encourage todays bright young students to become interested in agriculture and its role in our planets future.