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AUGUSTA, Maine (NEWS CENTER) - Farming generates about a billion dollars a year in economic activity for the State of Maine.

Across the country farming is on the decline, but here in Maine it is an industry that is actually growing. Farming is not what it used to be, but it is evolving. While there aren't as many big family farms, there are smaller operations popping up across the state.

"Thousands that produce for farmers markets, small entities that are niche growers.We have the largest number of farms within the states of New England and the numbers are increasing", said Walter Whitcomb Commissioner of Agriculture, Conservation andForestry.

Over the last several years farming has become a growth industry in Maine. The demand for food grown close to home has helped fuel that growth.

"Consumers are more aware of the food they're eating, where it's coming from and what's making it up", said Jake Galle one of the several young farmers attending the Maine Agricultural Trades Show.

Wednesdayyoung farmers will have the opportunity to come together and share ideas at the show. A networking session for young farmers is scheduled from 6 to 8pm at the Augusta Civic Center.
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