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920+ acres protected in the last weeks of 2019

We closed out 2019 by wrapping up three exciting farmland protection projects, resulting in about 923 acres of newly protected farmland! We are so grateful for all of the farmers we’ve partnered with over the last year, and for our members who make this work possible.

On December 19, Stanley Libby (center) and his family closed on the sale of an easement to protect their 81-acre Libby Farm in Scarborough.  An Option to Purchase at Ag Value (OPAV)  included in the easement will help to ensure the property remains in active agricultural use.  Stanley was born on the farm about 80 years ago and the property has been in the family for hundreds of years. Located in an extremely high area of development pressure, the property is currently managed for hay, but the family hopes to transition the property to a new farmer in the future.

On Christmas Eve, MFT closed on the purchase of an easement on the 546-acre Greenlaw Farm in Northport.  MFT has been working to protect this farm for almost a decade and we are thrilled this iconic property will be actively farmed in the future.  This easement also includes an OPAV, which will prevent the farm from transitioning out of agriculture.

On December 30th,  Gloria and Gregg Varney of Nezinscot Farm in Turner (pictured  with MFT staff Chris and Nina) closed on the purchase of a 196-acre property in Livermore Falls, which was protected earlier this year through our Buy Protect Sell program.  At the same time the Varneys protected about 100 acres of their home farm in Turner with a conservation easement. The Varneys run a diversified dairy farm which includes a bustling farm store and café.

These projects wrap up another successful year of protecting Maine’s precious farmland, rounding out 25 projects and a total of 3,000 acres protected in 2019. Here’s to more good work ahead in 2020!

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