Maine finds high level of “forever chemical” on dairy farm


AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — Maine agriculture officials said Friday that a farm in the central part of the state has a high level of a long-lasting pollutant, but the state’s retail milk supply remains safe to drink.

The Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry said the levels of perfluorooctanesulfonic, or PFOS, acid in milk from the farm exceeds the state’s threshold. The department said the farm is no longer producing milk for consumption and isn’t contributing to the milk supply.

The farm was tested as part of a statewide round of retail milk testing, the department said. Nineteen of 20 retail samples returned results below the laboratory reporting limit, it said.

The agriculture department and Maine Department of Environmental Protection are investigating the potential source of the pollutant on the farm. The chemical is part of a larger group of man-made chemicals that were widely used in household products and industrial production. They are sometimes called “forever chemicals.”