You may be seeing media attention on PFAS and Maine farms. This is an evolving situation. It is unclear how widespread PFAS contamination is in Maine. MFFM will regularly update this page to provide more information on the issue. Here is some of what we know so far. (last update = 3/8/2022)
What Are PFAS?
PFAS refers to the chemicals known as per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). Since the 1950s, manufacturers used PFAS in products ranging from food packaging to fire fighting foam. PFAS were commonly used to make products resistant to water, heat, and stains.
PFAS break down very slowly and are persistent in the environment. This means that PFAS may build up in people, animals, and the environment over time. Health agencies are working to understand more about the health effects of exposure. Manufacturing and waste management practices have spread contamination across the US and around the globe. Communities are now finding out that they have PFAS in the soil and water. (view a map of contamination here).
PFAS & Maine Farms
Maine is ahead of the curve in testing and taking action on PFAS contamination and pollution. There are maps indicating where high probability for PFAS exist. Farms located in high probability zones have priority for testing their soil and water.
Learn More about PFAS
- Maine Department of Environmental Protection
- MOFGA’s Webinar regarding PFAS 2/16/22
- MOFGA Blog: Legacy of PFAS in Maine Agriculture
Learn more about racism in Maine and its toxic impact on Maine’s Wabanaki communities.
Take Action on PFAS
- Visit Maine Farmland Trust’s Page for a thorough summary of the current work addressing PFAS
- Contact your senator and representative and urge them to support LD 1911.
- Donate to support Wabanaki communities: Wabanaki Alliance website & Donation Page.
- Donate to support farmers in Maine: PFAS Emergency Fund administered by MOFGA and Farmland Trust.
(All photo credits to Kelsey Kobik Photography)