It could be the start of a bad joke. What do cattle, U.S. Sen. Susan Collins and beer have in common?

You can find the unsurprising answer in Collins’ latest campaign video, a You Tube and television spot that began airing statewide Tuesday morning.

Collins, a three-term Republican incumbent from Maine is running against Democratic challenger Shenna Bellows, the former executive director of the ACLU of Maine.

Collins latest video features brewery owners and those who raise cattle in Maine noting one of the byproducts of beer fermentation product — spent grains has long been feed to cattle as a food supplement.  

The high-protein diet supplement is very valuable to farmers raising beef cattle, Rob Tod, the founder of Allagash Brewing in Portland says in the 1-minute video.

But that symbiotic relationship between brew masters and farmers was in jeopardy of federal Food and Drug Administration regulation that could have put a stop to the use of spent grains in beef production, according to the video.

Collins in her roll as a Senator went to bat for the farmers and the brewers, getting the FDA to back down. The video is the second that highlights Collins connections to working Maine people.

The message of Collins’ “common sense” approach to government — is a phrase one can expect to hear again and again from both Democrats and Republicans as we hurtle toward November.

The recycling of the spent grains by feeding it to cattle is also seen as an environmentally friendly thing to do. “Sen. Collins is a champion. For local farmers, for business and the environment,” Tod says in the video.

At the end of the video, Collins is shown sharing a toast and a pint with Tod, while the camera pans away before the good Senator actually takes a sip — you still get the idea. 

Read more columns at SunJournal.com/Politics/NorthtoAugusta

Sun Journal State Politics Editor Scott Thistle offers beyond-the-news observations on Maine politics.

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