Agriculture and Water Quality at Tall Ships Celebration

25th Jul 2013 4R Consistent,4R Events,North Central,

The Michigan Agri-Business Association (MABA), with additional sponsorship from The Fertilizer Institute and Scotts Miracle-Gro, sponsored the live broadcast of the Paul W. Smith Show from the Tall Ship Celebration in Bay City on July 12. All of the activities for the day used the tagline “Michigan agriculture: growing the economy and protecting the environment.”

MABA used this sponsorship as a springboard to amplify the message over several platforms, including radio, in-person meetings and internet communications. This was a unique opportunity to reach the general public and communicate that agriculture is taking proactive and aggressive steps to protect water quality in the Great Lakes region and educate them about advances in technology, new fertilizer materials and best management practices such as the 4R Nutrient Stewardship System.

The sponsorship included five 60 second vignettes, live interviews on the Paul W. Smith show, and interviews on Greening of the Great Lakes. Both the Paul W. Smith Show and Greening of the Great Lakes air on WJR News/Talk 760. WJR is a well-known “brand” in Michigan. Known as “The Great Voice Of  The Great Lakes” for nearly 100 years, WJR has served the needs of the Detroit market and beyond with its powerful 50,000 watt signal. WJR is Michigan’s largest, farthest reaching radio station. It is concentrated in southeastern Michigan, and each week over three quarters of a million total listeners tune in to the station.


The sponsorship included a number of activities.

We recorded five different 60-second vignettes highlighting some of what agriculture does to protect water quality including things like the 4R Nutrient Stewardship Program, site-specific agriculture and using new technology and materials.
The vignettes are posted online at the following links:

These vignettes aired in the week leading up to the live broadcast and during the Paul W. Smith show on July 12. They were also streaming on WJR’s online
broadcast. The Michigan Agri-Business Association also used the vignettes as part of a presentation to Michigan legislative and department staff on water quality and agriculture on July 8 in Lansing. The vignettes were included in MABA’s member newsletter, as well as the 4R newsletter from The Fertilizer Institute.

MABA organized two panel interviews on water quality and agriculture live on the Paul W. Smith show that aired from 6 – 9 a.m. on July 12. These are available for download on the WJR website by clicking the following links:

We shared updates, pictures and audio files during and after the broadcast on Facebook and Twitter. WJR also shared social media updates during the event. These were shared and “re-tweeted” by several groups, including the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, The Fertilizer Institute and Scotts Miracle-Gro.  The pictures below are a couple of examples of these social media posts.

Panelists also had the opportunity to record segments for The Greening of the Great Lakes, a weekly program that airs on WJR. These segments aired July 20-21. The show’s host, Dr. Kirk Heinze, wrote a blog post for which includes the audio files. You can read and listen to these segments online by clicking here.  These were also shared on our social media, website and newsletters.