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Aquaculture training program in development in Maine

April 17, 2021 GMT

WALPOLE, Maine (AP) — A Maine aquaculture center and a community college are working together to develop a new aquaculture workforce training program in the state.

Maine aquaculture operations grow shellfish, salmon, seaweed and other seafood species. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture has awarded a $500,000 grant to the Maine Aquaculture Innovation Center in Walpole to develop the workforce pilot program with Washington County Community College.

Democratic Rep. Chellie Pingree said the program will train aquaculturists and help students get access to good jobs in the aquaculture industry. She said the project’s programming will meet a need for entry-level skills in aquaculture sectors including finfish, shellfish and others.

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Program graduates will leave the program with a training certificate or an associates degree, Pingree said.