What branch of state government is charged with “protecting the food we eat”? According to the Maine.gov website, it’s the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry.

Recently the Humane Society issued a video showing distressing, unsanitary conditions at the DeCoster egg farm in Turner, with hens laying eggs next to carcasses of hens that had been left rotting for months. In response, the Maine Department of Agriculture assured Mainers that the eggs from that farm are safe to eat, at the same time promising to investigate the farm.

But if the Department thinks an investigation is warranted, how can it assure the public in the meantime that the eggs are safe?

Gov. Paul LePage, instead of thanking the Humane Society for bringing the conditions of the hens at DeCoster to the attention of the public and the government, attacked the Society, saying that Maine has “some of the best” animal protection laws in the country. Well, if we have such strong laws and the conditions at DeCoster are nevertheless cruel and unsanitary, why aren’t those laws being enforced?

And who is responsible for seeing that the state’s laws are enforced? The governor.

Who is responsible for investigating whether the governor and his administration are “protecting the food we eat”? The Legislature.

Legislators, do your job. The people of Maine are entitled to a safe food supply.

James Parakilas, Lewiston

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or login first for digital access. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.