Aquaculture Opportunities from the National Sea Grant Program

Submitted by Webmaster on Thu, 02/28/2019 - 12:07

Please check back for updated information on these opportunities

UPDATE - 12 March 2019

We are excited to take this opportunity with you to work on proposals to Explore New Aquaculture Opportunities and develop Advanced Aquaculture Collaborative Programs.

Submissions for both calls must be submitted by Maine Sea Grant, therefore proposals to both FFOs are subject to UMaine Office of Research Administration's timelines - please see timeline specifics for each below.

For NEW opportunities: We suggest that you:

  1. reach out by 22 March to discuss your collaboration with someone in the Maine Sea Grant program
  2. work with Maine Sea Grant staff to submit your Letter of Intent by 26 March
  3. have your complete draft budget, justification (specifying 50% match) and draft narrative to Maine Sea Grant by 2 April
  4. work with Maine Sea Grant and UMaine ORA to complete the grants.gov submission by 24 April

For COLLABORATIVE opportunities: We plan to approach this in two ways as our capacity allows.

I. Maine Sea Grant will lead one proposal. We are working on the proposal details and envision involving a later statewide request for proposals to form a Sea Grant-led collaborative.

II. If you have other ideas for this FFO please:

  1. reach out by 29 March to Gayle or Beth to discuss your collaboration with the Maine Sea Grant program
  2. work with the Maine Sea Grant Program to submit a Letter of Intent by 15 April
  3. work with the Maine Sea Grant Program to complete a draft budget, justification (specifying 50% match) and draft narrative to be submitted by 24 April
  4. work with Maine Sea Grant and UMaine ORA to complete the grants.gov submission by 15 May

We look forward to hearing from you.


What an opportunity we have. The National Sea Grant College Program has just released three funding opportunities to support research and industry engagement to advance U.S. aquaculture. With your help, we want to put Maine’s best foot forward! The intent of these opportunities is to build on recent NOAA investments and tap the aquaculture expertise in the Sea Grant network. The details for each of the three opportunities are delineated here:

  1. Advanced Aquaculture Collaborative Programs
    $9,000,000 - LOI April 15, Full May 15
  2. Exploring New Aquaculture Opportunities
    $1,500,000 - LOI March 26, Full April 24
  3. Social, Behavioral, and Economic Research Needs in Aquaculture
    $3,000,000 - LOI April 2, Full May 1

We have also just learned about these opportunities and want to communicate our interests and the process. As directed in the first two FFOs, we are required to take leadership for submissions under opportunities 1 and 2. We are willing to be involved in proposals to the National Sea Grant Office under FFO #3 if our participation could be of benefit, but will focus our efforts on developing strong submissions for the first two.

The Collaborative Program and New Opportunities calls require Sea Grant Program leadership and submission. Neither of these calls is intended to support a single, discrete research project. As outlined in the FFOs, they are intended to be broader projects that may involve research, but also require industry involvement, outreach and extension components, and increase the capacity of the Maine Sea Grant Program to support ongoing and future research, extension, and science communication activities related to aquaculture. As such, based on our current bandwidth, for each of the programs our current intentions are:

  • Collaborative Program:
    • We intend to submit two Letters of Intent
    • Both programs will be led by Maine Sea Grant and will include the addition of a full-time extension professional dedicated to this collaborative program (building capacity)
    • While topical details will be worked out over the next couple of weeks, we anticipate
      • Focusing on research priority areas identified in the 10-year NOAA Sea Grant Aquaculture Vision document, and more recent network-wide planning initiatives
      • Forming a transdisciplinary team including industry, other local and state partners, and researchers from multiple disciplines
    • The maximum allowed budget for this opportunity is $1.2M, for a project period of up to 3 years, and it will require 50% non-federal match in each year
  • New Opportunities Program:
    • We intend to submit up to five Letters of Intent
    • These submissions should be extension-oriented and should include some level of funding for extension professionals dedicated to the program (building capacity)
    • While topical details will be worked out over the next couple of weeks for these NEW high-risk, high-reward ideas in under-explored areas, we anticipate both:
      • Identifying specific areas of interest to our current extension programming and collaborations
      • Soliciting ideas from industry members and other collaborators and partners that would benefit from our extension professional's involvement and coordination
    • The maximum allowed budget for this opportunity is $100,000, for a project period of up to two years, and it will require 50% non-federal match in each year.

The National Sea Grant Office will be providing further guidance to state Sea Grant programs during a webinar on Monday, 4 March at 3:00 PM EST. If you would like to participate in the webinar, please register or join using this link.

Once we receive that additional guidance we will establish a more explicit process for deciding on proposals that will move forward to the national office from the Maine Sea Grant Program for FFOs 1 and 2. In the meantime, please look through these FFOs and think about topic areas and how you may want to be involved.