Now, band member Kendall Schmidt is taking her advice to heart.
Schmidt recently teamed up with his brothers Kenneth and Kevin to launch iAquaponics.com, a site designed to educate the public on the commercial food production system known as Aquaponics — and he’s so passionate about the project, he wrote a letter to Michelle Obama asking for her support.
Celebuzz recently spoke to the Schmidt brothers about their website, organic lifestyle and whether they actually eat any junk food. Check out the full interview, plus an exclusive look at Kendall’s letter to Michelle Obama, after the jump.
CELEBUZZ: Kendall, the first time you’ve performed for the First Family. What’s it like knowing that Michelle Obama chose BTR for the kids’ state dinner — and that she even sang along?
KENDALL SCHMIDT: It’s pretty cool to have the support of the First Family. But past their position in politics, they’re very nice people, that’s what I really respond to.
CB: Did the first lady give you any advice or healthy tips?
KENDALL: She said to make smart choices.
CB: Be honest: How much junk food is in the Schmidt household — and on the BTR tour bus?
KENDALL: Not as much as there used to be!
KEVIN: Kenneth and I were chubby bunnies growing up.
KENNETH: We try to avoid the junk food as much as possible.
KEVIN: But we still pig out from time to time. I’m an ice cream and potato chips guy.
KENNETH: Together? Gross.
KEVIN: Hardy har har. Funny, Kenneth.
CB: What inspired you to write the letter to Michelle Obama? And what can you tell us about your current aquaponics project? Is it a healthy living initiative similar to her “Let’s Move” campaign?
KENDALL: My family and I have been interested in aquaponics for many years now.
KEVIN: I came across the technology when I was researching material for a film that is set in the near future. I was trying to figure out how society was going to feed all seven billion people on the planet.
KENDALL: The traditional method of food production — farming outside cities and trucking it all in — seems to make less and less sense as transport costs increase … Plus, there’s the nutrient loss to consider.
KEVIN: The goal of our business model is to grow large quantities of fish and produce inside cities across the U.S. and world.
KENDALL: Our concept is part “Let’s Find A More Efficient Way To Feed People Affordable, High-Quality Food” and part “Let’s Move.”
KEVIN: Mrs. Obama’s goals and our own are definitely parallel, which is why we decided to reach out and see if there’s a chance of combining our efforts to some degree.
CB: You guys work on so many projects together, but do you ever get annoyed with one another?
KENDALL: At moments, maybe, but we don’t see much of each other these days!
KENNETH: Kendall’s either filming Big Time Rush, touring, or at a photo shoot somewhere. I’m in Chicago attending school and spending time in China over the next two years.
KEVIN: And I’m either filming something, building a business, or locked in a room writing!
KENDALL: Basically, we get along too well to be annoyed. If anything, we miss hanging out.
CB: Do the Schmidt bros have anything else in the works? Perhaps something more musical?
KENNETH: I’m releasing a conceptual video for “Micro-Macro” in the near future. I hope the message encourages people to think about the future they wish to create for themselves and ultimately civilization.
CB: How do you enjoy being a role model for your young fans? What’s the most important piece of advice you would give to them?
KEVIN: I don’t think our intention is to be “role models.” If anything, we have great parents who raised us well. They always encouraged us to make our own choices and accept responsibility for those choices; good, bad or ugly.
KENDALL: Sometimes we fall on our faces, but we always get back up. We never quit.
KENNETH: “Can’t” was a word our parents told us never to use. That was sound advise then and it’s sound advice now.