ScottsMiracle-Gro's commitment will be demonstrated in the four following ways:
1. INVESTING IN FLORIDA-BASED SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH
The company's Florida commitment includes funding of environmental research and academic organizations that are focused on having fact-based conversations about the impact of lawn and garden activities on water quality and developing effective solutions, regardless of the nutrient source.
The first of these projects is a two-year research grant to the Ocean Resource Conservation Association (ORCA), based in Ft. Pierce, Fla., that will focus on the Indian River Lagoon. The research will map point and non-point sources of nutrients and other potential pollutants flowing into the Lagoon that can help focus public and private investments on the highest priority actions that might improve and protect water and wildlife in the lagoon.Chris Allen, president of ScottsMiracle-Gro's south region based in West Palm Beach, Fla., said the only stipulation placed on the grant is that the research process and results be transparent and include input and peer review from a range of scientists. "There are a lot of complicated issues that are causing water quality concerns in Florida," Allen said. "We are looking to independent, science-based research to help better understand the root causes of these problems and to suggest solutions." 2. COMMITMENT TO EDUCATING FLORIDA HOMEOWNERS Beginning this spring, ScottsMiracle-Gro will invest in radio and online advertising, a new, web-based consumer resource ( www.scotts.com/florida) and also in-store messaging, as part of an effort to remind Florida consumers about the importance of practicing responsible lawn and garden activities. Additionally, Scotts LawnService will be providing new Florida Friendly Lawn Care educational materials directly to hundreds of thousands of Florida households, and has launched a website, www.floridafriendlylawncare.com, to support its communication efforts. Another component of ScottsMiracle-Gro's education efforts will be a range of education tools that city and county governments and elected officials can utilize to communicate directly to local residents. All of Scotts' branded and unbranded education content will be based on the lawn and garden care recommendations of leading academic experts in the field of turf science.