By Ashley McLeod, AshleynMcleod@ufl.edu, 352-273-0793
GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Florida’s county commissioners look to the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) for reliable agricultural-related information, according to a recent study.
In May 2018, the UF/IFAS Center for Public Issues Education in Agriculture and Natural Resources (PIE Center) surveyed 43 county commissioners to identify the sources they use for information on agriculture, food, water and natural resources.
“UF/IFAS ranked the highest of all organizations and agencies on the survey as Florida county commissioners’ information source for food, agriculture, natural resources and water issues,” said agricultural education and communication professor and PIE Center director Ricky Telg. “I think the results show that when county commissioners need information in these vital areas, they look to UF/IFAS.”
One hundred percent of county commissioners who were surveyed use UF/IFAS to some degree as a source for information about agriculture and food, and 95 percent of county commissioners use UF/IFAS as a source for information about water and natural resources.
In a separate study conducted in May, the PIE Center surveyed 439 members of Florida’s agricultural organizations to identify the sources they most often use and trust for information on agriculture, food, water and natural resources.
When given a selection of agricultural and natural resources information sources, members of Florida’s agricultural organizations rated local UF/IFAS Extension offices, UF/IFAS and the PIE Center as the most trustworthy sources.
“Results show that Florida’s agricultural community puts a lot of trust in UF/IFAS, UF/IFAS Extension and the PIE Center,” Telg said.
The mission of the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences is to develop knowledge relevant to agricultural, human and natural resources and to make that knowledge available to sustain and enhance the quality of human life. With more than a dozen research facilities, 67 county Extension offices, and award-winning students and faculty in the UF College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, UF/IFAS works to bring science-based solutions to the state’s agricultural and natural resources industries, and all Florida residents. Visit the UF/IFAS web site at ifas.ufl.edu and follow us on social media at @UF_IFAS.