Maine was once one of our nation's leading agricultural states. In this regard, Maine and the rest of the northeast produced large quantities of food for a growing nation. Through the 20th century, however, we watched as national agricultural policies shifted the focus of food production to large agribusinesses and kept family farms in Maine and many states from being viable businesses. Until we stop treating agriculture as a hobby instead of a business and national security bulwark, we risk our food security and deprive our people of an economic opportunity. Locally-grown food is fresher, healthier, and requires fewer resources to harvest, store and transport. I will fight for local agriculture in Maine, as it can be our greatest stabilizing economic asset. And the resources are right here in Maine, under our feet.
As a state legislator, natural resource policy was an area of intense work for me. I understand the value and promise of our natural resources not only as economic engines, but as a tremendous heritage as well. Farming, fishing, forestry, and outdoor recreation hold special places for every citizen of our state. We must take care to ensure that these resources are cultivated and sustained for future generations.