“Fresh from Florida” has become a familiar face to many Floridians due to the popular logo displayed on product packaging and media, but do you really know the background of the brand and its plans for agriculture?
The Fresh from Florida mission is protecting the environment, safeguarding consumers, and ensuring a safe, wholesome food supply. Fresh from Florida has certainly mastered the art of bringing the 47,000 small producers together for a greater cause. The program gives small and large producers the chance to return resources back to Florida communities.
From fruits and vegetables to water conservation, forestry, and research and development, Fresh from Florida puts its best foot forward to ensure that the best quality of agriculture is available, especially for Floridians.
An interesting fact is that as Florida’s leading agency for food safety, Fresh from Florida analyzes more than 15,000 food samples each year. Scientists test for toxins, allergens, chemical contaminants, pesticide residues, food additives and fraudulent formulations — all to ensure that the best quality is available for consumers.
A few years ago, Florida Cattlemen’s Association Executive Vice President Jim Handley went to Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam to talk about the Fresh from Florida brand and proposed the question: Could cattle be raised and sold under the state of Florida more efficiently than the current way of doing business?
Recently, Fresh from Florida has looked into reducing the carbon footprint of raising cattle by not only raising grass-fed cattle versus grain-fed, but by finishing them in-state on the grass, instead of shipping the calves out West. Not only will this plan reduce the carbon footprint, it will also reduce stress on the animals.
We spoke with Mike Joyner, assistant commissioner and chief of staff for the Florida Department of Agriculture, on how involved Fresh from Florida really is.