November 21, 2011 - by
Sunshine Showdown

Nov. 21, 2011

Tallahassee, FL – Florida Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam announced today the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services has teamed up with two of the state’s top brands – the Florida State Seminoles and Florida Gators – to harness the home team passion associated with the athletics rivalry and direct it towards supporting Florida products. The partnership leverages every game, match and competition between the two teams in 18 sports to promote Fresh From Florida.

The tradition-rich Florida State Seminoles vs. Florida Gators football game will serve as the signature event of this partnership to communicate the importance of all that’s Fresh From Florida to an audience that is uniquely Florida: Seminoles and Gator Fans. This year’s matchup of the Florida State Seminoles and Florida Gators  football teams will be titled the “Fresh From Florida Sunshine Showdown,” scheduled for November 26 in Gainesville. The Fresh from Florida Sunshine Showdown will highlight the importance of supporting Florida farmers and fisherman and communicate the impact of buying home grown and harvested products from Florida.

“The Fresh From Florida Sunshine Showdown brings two of Florida’s great teams head to head,” said Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam. “As each side cheers for their home team, we’re hopeful they’ll support Florida’s ultimate home team, Florida’s farmers and fishermen.”

Florida’s seafood industry has taken a blow from public misperceptions about the safety of Florida seafood following the Gulf oil spill. The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services tests Florida Gulf seafood for the presence of contaminants and results show the seafood is safe. The new Fresh From Florida Sunshine Showdown is an effort to encourage fans to support the local economy and buy Florida seafood and agricultural products.

Throughout the season, head football coaches Jimbo Fisher and Will Muschamp appear in ads reminding fans to look for Fresh from Florida products in grocery stores and ask for them in restaurants. These ads, currently airing statewide on television and radio, encourage viewers and listeners to support Florida’s economy by buying Florida grown and harvested products.

To view advertisements featuring Fisher and Muschamp, visit: /ViewArticle.dbml?DB_OEM_ID=32900&ATCLID=209596010

“Not that the rivalry between FSU and Florida needs anything else to raise the excitement level, but we are happy to be able to tie it in to something as important as the seafood industry and agriculture in the state of Florida,” said Randy Spetman, director of athletics at Florida State University. “We all live here or have strong ties here and it is important that we pull together to help support the farmers and merchants within our state. “

“We’re proud to do whatever we can to help our economy here in Florida and remind fans of the importance of supporting these great industries,” said University of Florida Director of Athletics Jeremy Foley. “We’re excited to participate and tie this great rivalry to a message that is important to all of us.”

Throughout the year, head men’s basketball coaches Leonard Hamilton and Billy Donovan will echo the call to Floridians to support Fresh From Florida. Teams’ popular web sites and offer seasonal recipes and information on availability of fruits, vegetables and seafood for each time of year. Messaging will remind fans while it’s their team’s plan to win on the field, fans can help all Floridians win by buying Fresh from Florida.

Agriculture is a $100 billion industry in Florida. In this difficult economic environment, it is important for Floridians to support their neighbors and communities by buying locally-grown and harvested products, especially Florida seafood.

For more information about the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, visit or follow Commissioner Putnam on Facebook, Twitter, or Google+.

Related Articles