Aquaculture Research Institute

The University of Maine Aquaculture Research Institute (ARI) is an interdisciplinary research unit that conducts research and supports graduate and undergraduate research focused on sustainable farming in freshwater, the sea, and in land-based recirculating water systems. The ARI is dedicated to responsible stewardship of marine, coastal and freshwater resources, and promoting the role of sustainable aquaculture in upholding the cultural and economic traditions of working waterfronts.

ARI research areas include:

  • Aquatic animal health
  • Sustainable aquaculture production
  • Environmental impacts on aquaculture
  • Social dimensions of aquaculture
  • Industry contract research in aquatic animal health

ARI research contributions include:

  • Development and testing of innovative products to promote aquatic animal health and healthy seafood
  • Understanding the impact of environmental change on health of aquatic animals and ecosystems
  • Promoting diversification of the aquaculture production industry
  • Development of new, healthy seafood products
  • Establishment of a new statewide sustainable ecological aquaculture research network (SEANET)

ARI points of pride include:

  • An award of a $20 million NSF EPSCoR Track 1 RII research and education program on sustainable ecological aquaculture
  • Reaching out to approximately 3,000 K–12 students in Maine every year to increase awareness of aquaculture as a career choice and its importance as an industry in Maine, through field trips, school visits and festivals
  • $1–1.5 million of industry contract research per year supporting the aquaculture industry in Maine and the U.S.
  • Close collaborations with Maine Aquaculture Innovation Center, Maine Sea Grant, Maine Aquaculture Association, Maine Aquaculture Coordinating Council and many others to ensure an integrated and coordinated approach to the development and expansion of the aquaculture industry

Unique facilities, tools and libraries include:

  • Aquaculture Research Center and Aquaculture Interpretation Center in Orono
  • BSL2 containment facility in Orono
  • Center for Cooperative Aquaculture Research in Franklin
  • Darling Marine Center research shellfish hatchery in Walpole

Visit the ARI website for more information.

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