Applications Invited for Island Institute’s Aquaculture Business Development Program

Alex Whitebrook/ March 1, 2018/ News/ 0 comments

Chebeague fisherman and former ABD participant Jeff Putnam works on oyster cages. After going through the program in 2016, Putnam started an oyster-growing business with his family.

Island Institute is now accepting applications for its 2018 Aquaculture Business Development (ABD) program. In its third year, the program helps fishermen and others from fishing communities to diversify and launch small-scale aquaculture businesses. The nonprofit is looking to work with coastal and island residents who are highly motivated to start their shellfish or seaweed aquaculture businesses within the next two years. Applications are being accepted through March 23.

The Aquaculture Business Development (ABD) Program will provide training on how to grow oysters, mussels, and seaweed; knowledge of the state leasing process, site selection, and community relations; the opportunity to visit established aquaculture operations from New England to Canada; connections to existing aquaculturists and industry experts; assistance in developing a business plan, marketing strategy, and farm management plan; and access to financing and continued business support for the first three years of business operation.

This year’s program will begin with all-group and individual meetings in April, followed by a two- to three-day aquaculture boot camp where participants will receive hands-on training at sea farms in early May. Throughout the summer, participants will receive one-on-one assistance from Island Institute staff as they start their businesses, and the year will round out with in-person meetings in the late fall and winter.

Read more HERE.

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