Maine Aquaculture Business Planning Tools

Questions related to these resources may be directed to:
Christian Brayden:

Maine Aquaculture Marketing Webinar & Tech Report

A part of the Expanding Maine’s Blue Economy project, this technical report presents findings from a 2022 survey on the Maine aquaculture sector’s marketing needs. The report overviews markets and distribution methods currently used by producers along with those targeted by producers as they expand their businesses. Successes, failures, and lessons learned from those who have already tried to expand their businesses are also included. Other information in the report covers barriers  to accessing markets and how Maine aquaculture producers promote and label their products, among other topics. 

Click here to download the full tech report. 

Maine Aquaculture Distribution Mapping Manual

The Maine Aquaculture Distribution Mapping Manual is a guide that helps sea farmers compare and contrast the existing and potential distribution channels for their products to best decide how to get them to market. More than 20 stakeholders were interviewed to inform the manual, including seafood producers, wholesalers, distributors, restaurateurs, trucking companies, and other aquaculture industry members, both in Maine and across the U.S. The manual, which was funded in partnership with FocusMaine, puts forth three main recommendations to farmers, including: 1) diversify sales channels, 2) maintain strong relationships, and 3) keep product quality consistent.

The Manual will also serve to inform a collaborative project underway between MAA, the University of Maine School of Economics, Gulf of Maine Research Institute, Island Institute, and University of Maine Cooperative Extension that explores in greater detail the costs, volumes, availability, and reach of the identified distribution channels, along with consumer preferences for Maine seafood across the U.S. The ongoing project is funded via NOAA and Maine Sea Grant award number NA21OAR4170086. 

Sea Scallop Aquaculture Budget Tool & User Manual

This scallop aquaculture budget tool is designed to help either new growers or established farmers better understand how specific changes to the production process, biological inputs, or whole scallop market will impact their business. The data used to build this model are based on interviews and conversations with growers in Maine. The values used here are designed to simulate a ‘typical’ farm. In practice, however, all farms are different and require a unique set of parameters. Therefore, this tool has areas where you may input the specifics of your business to more accurately project future revenues and costs. A ‘User Manual’ accompanies this tool and should be read in full before any inputs are made or results are analyzed. The User Manual contains further information regarding scallop aquaculture in Maine and a more detailed description of the sources of the data used here.

DISCLAIMER: the results of this tool should be taken with the same precautions and caveats as any other financial projection. It is simply one tool designed to help guide decision making and should not be used as the sole source of projected future earnings or financial success. Results may vary depending on the specifics of your farm.

Business & Production Plans

These business planning tools are designed to provide Maine aquaculture business owners with updated resources and capabilities to help strengthen their businesses. Each suite of tools includes software to develop a production plan and a business plan for the grower’s species of choice (oysters, mussels, scallops, or seaweed), complete with user manuals and a two-hour, one-on-one training session with MAA Project Manager Christian Brayden.

The business plan features include short and long-term budget projections and tracking, financial projection and analysis tools, monthly cash flow projections, costs of production analysis, profitability analysis, sensitivity analysis, and breakeven analysis. The production plans offer additional capabilities such as short and long-term production projections and tracking, data-based growth projections, monthly sales planning and tracking, and a production calendar. If you are interested in setting up a business plan, please reach out to Christian at

For more resources, please check out our free Risk Management Tools and Financial Benchmarking Report.