The Maine Legislature also weighed in on the issue last week. After more than a year of debate — lawmakers approved a compromise that, among other things, offers some legal protection to organic growers who unintentionally are exposed to genetically engineered seeds. But it’s hard to find middle ground in the Montville ban, and that’s causing controversy. A Maine group that represents large biotechnology companies says the ban could chill research and development efforts and hurt the state’s economy. Meanwhile, the Maine Department of Agriculture is asking the attorney general for an opinion on whether Montville’s ordinance is legal, or violates the state’s right-to-farm rules.Let’s hope this is a seed that is replanted across the country.
Hats off to the folks of little Montville, Maine, a town of about 1,000 people where there is no post office, no store, and no school. But those facts don’t mean they are lacking in spirit or smarts. Two weeks ago at their annual town meeting, residents passed an ordinance banning genetically-engineered crops. According to an article in the Portland Press Herald, supporters say Montville is the first American community outside California to do this. The article adds: