By Avery Yale Kamila
Portland Herald Press

Quotes from this article:

“According to the latest statistics from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Maine is home to 8,100 farms, and more than 90 percent of them are classified as small operations. Maine is also ahead of the curve in the organic farming movement, with the number of certified farms doubling between 2006 and 2008, the latest years for which the USDA’s figures are available.”

“Ultimately, it’s up to the consumer,” Whitcomb said. “It’s not by government edict that the consolidation of these processors happened. The consumer is king.”

“If low price is the goal, consolidation and factory farms are the answer. But if supporting the local economy, creating jobs, eating fresh food and enjoying a clean environment is the goal, then a sustainable local food system is the answer.”

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