Sending JSON to Red Panda

I've been looking into switching over from Kafka to Red Panda and was wondering if anyone had experience with using Kafka producers to connect to Red Pandas in Rust. I can send strings to Red Panda, however any data that I serialize using serde_json is not received. I can however successfully send it to Kafka. My understanding is that it should be exactly the same, however if I swap out the Kafka brokers to my Red Panda brokers in the producer I do not receive the JSON data in Red Panda. No errors are thrown. I am using the rdkafka crate and the BaseProducer. The code is similar to the following:

let producer: BaseProducer = ClientConfig::new()
        .set("bootstrap.servers", "LISTOFBROKERS")
        .set("", "5000")
        .expect("Producer creation error");

// works
  .expect("failed to send message");

// Works with Kafka, not Red Panda, requires poll
let json_data = serde_json::to_string(&custom_strct).unwrap();

    ).expect("Failed to Send Message");


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