Carter talks with edible MAINE about Cooperative Extension

University of Maine Cooperative Extension is the featured nonprofit in the summer issue of edible MAINE, a food magazine based in Portland. “If you like local food, you should love the University of Maine Cooperative Extension. It touches over 5,000 food-based operations in Maine annually,” the story began. “With the help of 5,000 volunteers, it offers hands-on help with everything from pest management practices for wild blueberry farmers to food packaging advice for new salsa makers. And it works to make connections between pressing issues, like food insecurity and surplus food production, or hard science and environmental stewardship.” Hannah Carter, chief executive officer of Cooperative Extension, said the goal of each interpersonal interaction — including those in Master Gardener and Master Food Preserver programs and in 4-H collaborations with middle and high school students — is to create positive change in the lives of the learners. Conditions for agricultural growth in Maine amount to a perfect storm, she said. “I mean that in a good way. There is affordable land, folks who are interested in farming, and a proven market.”