Last week we reported that the National Wildlife Federation (NWF) and ScottsMiracle-Gro had partnered to advance NWF’s nationwide Be Out There (http://bit.ly/beoutthere) initiative to connect children with nature.
And over the weekend, the partnership abruptly ended. Throughout last week, garden and environmental activists used social media to decry the partnership and voice their objections to the pairing. Then word came that SMG plead guilty to charges in federal court and will pay $4.5 million in fines for selling pesticide-coated birdseed. Court documents said that, from November 2005 to March 2008, Scotts distributed 73 million units of birdseed coated with insecticides called Storcide II and Actellic 5E. This was done to keep insects from eating the seeds during storage.
The Columbus Dispatch offered this recap of the federal court verdict.
National Wildlife Federation issued a statement about the end of the partnership:
The National Wildlife Federation has worked together with ScottsMiracle-Gro over the past two years on programs to educate gardeners about global warming, connect children to the outdoors and help restore habitat following the Gulf oil disaster. Both parties recently announced plans for an even broader partnership that was based on our common interests.
Since that time, Scotts announced a pending legal settlement related to events in 2008 that predate our partnership, which has made it clear that the partnership is not viable. Therefore, NWF and Scotts will work together to end the partnership in a friendly and mutually beneficial way.