BDN speaks with Mallory about Maine Grain Conference

The Bangor Daily News interviewed Ellen Mallory, an associate Extension professor with University of Maine Cooperative Extension and associate professor in the UMaine School of Food and Agriculture, for an article about industrial hemp in Maine and the Maine Grain Conference. Mallory noted a presentation on industrial hemp as part of the annual Maine Grain Conference may be helpful to growers looking to diversify into the crop, which is used to make paper, textiles, biodegradable plastics, health food and fuel. “There are a lot of questions around growing hemp in Maine. There have been a lot of new developments in terms of what is allowed and what is legal,” Mallory said. “We hope the presentation will help clear up some of these questions and concerns [and] give a realistic look at what is involved with the crop.” This year’s conference, sponsored by UMaine Extension, will be held 8:30 a.m.–5:30 p.m. March 1 at the University of Maine at Presque Isle. Topics will include planting, growing and marketing grains, storage, finances, diseases and grain variety trials, the BDN reported. “Maine is absolutely a great state to grow grain. Maine grows 50,000 acres of grain annually,” said Mallory, who added most of that grain is oats and barley grown in rotation with potatoes in northern Maine. “This conference is for all growers of grain in Maine. We will be addressing topics of interest to conventional and organic producers,” she said. Registration is required online by Feb. 21.