Perhaps it's not just one thing that's brought about this great change. It could be almost anything from the poor economy to the locavore movement to fears regarding food security, but over the past five years or so I've noticed a huge increase in the number of farms, farmers and farmer's markets.
In fact, there's been a farmer's market in Portland for some time, and it's grown so popular that there's a waiting list ... for the farmers (!).
Personally, I find that to be very exciting. Not only is Maine reviving its agricultural roots, but also, the local farmers are offering local people first dibs on what they're growing. Maine is becoming the reality Sharon Astyk and Aaron Newton envisioned in their book A Nation of Farmers
And it goes even a step further, because, as this article points out, it's not just native Mainers who are getting into the act, but also the immigrant population that has found a home in southern Maine.
I don't get to Portland very often, but it might be worth a trip some Monday ... just to check things out ;).