Maine has a state flower, a state fossil, even a state soil. But it doesn’t have a state dessert. That could change this year, however, if a bill seeking to designate the whoopie pie as Maine’s official dessert succeeds.
Sponsored by state Rep. Paul Davis, the bill has gained widespread support in Maine. Supporters point to the pie’s long history in the state and claim that it even originated in Maine back in the 1920s. But not everyone is happy with the push to make the relationship official.
Pennsylvania, for one, has a bone to pick with Maine’s version of whoopie pie history. The editorial board of the Patriot-News newspaper urged Pennsylvania’s governor to make the issue a pet cause.
"Few foods are considered more Pennsylvania-centric than whoopie pies and yet Maine is moving forward with plans to make our cakey, sugary treat the official state dessert," the paper said. "This makes no sense since [Maine] already has the market cornered on lobster pie and blueberry pie."
But the most vocal opponent of the bill is one of Davis’ fellow state representatives. In a January hearing, Rep. Donald Pilon denounced whoopie pies as "frosting delivery vehicles masquerading as food.”
"At a time when 31.3 percent of Maine’s children are considered overweight or obese, do we want to glorify a dessert that lists lard as a primary ingredient?” he asked. Pilon then announced his idea for a state dessert: wild blueberry pie.
The whoopie pie fight continues.