Farms, Forests, & Facilities

Centers & Institutes

  • Aroostook Farm. A center for potato research in Presque Isle, Maine, Aroostook Farm is a research facility of the Maine Agricultural and Forest Experiment Station.
  • Blueberry Hill Farm. A center for wild blueberry research in Jonesboro, Maine, Blueberry Hill Farm is a research facility of the Maine Agricultural and Forest Experiment Station.
  • Highmoor Farm. A center for fruit and vegetable research in Monmouth, Maine, Highmoor Farm is a research facility of the Maine Agricultural and Forest Experiment Station.
  • J. F. Witter Teaching and Research Center. The Witter Center includes two research farms near the UMaine campus: Witter Farm, a center for livestock research and animal science teaching, and Rogers Farm, a center for forage and crops research. The Witter Center is a research facility of the Maine Agricultural and Forest Experiment Station.
  • Darling Marine Center. The Darling Marine Center in Walpole, Maine, is the site of world-renowned marine research. It functions year round to support UMaine faculty and students, along with visiting investigators from across the country and around the world.
  • Zebrafish Facility. The Zebrafish Facility is located in Hitchner Hall at the UMaine campus in Orono. The facility contains nearly 800 tanks, holding more than 30,000 zebrafish, which are used for cutting-edge genomics research.
  • Penobscot Experimental Forest. The Penobscot Experimental Forest is a 4,200-acre forest located approximately 15 miles from the UMaine campus, which is used as a site for research on forest management. The Northern Research Station of the U. S. Forest Service also conducts long-term research on the property.
  • Holt Research Forest. The Holt Research Forest is a 300-acre forest in Arrowsic, Maine. Research at the forest focuses on long-term changes in forest plant and animal populations and improving our understanding the effects of forest management.
  • Dwight B. Demeritt Forest. The Dwight B. Demeritt forest includes more than 2,000 acres immediately adjacent to the UMaine campus. The forest is used for education, research, demonstration, and recreation.

Faculty in the College of Natural Sciences, Forestry, and Agriculture are part of college or university centers and institutes that bring multi-disciplinary approaches to bear on science, technology, and management challenges for Maine, the nation, and beyond. Faculty members also lead many more focused research and outreach programs or initiatives listed below.

  • Maine Agricultural and Forest Experiment Station. The state’s center for research in agriculture, forestry, wood products, marine fisheries and aquaculture, wildlife, rural economic development, and tourism for Maine and its people.
  • Maine Food and Agriculture Center. The Maine Food and Agriculture Center coordinates and seeks to expand the University of Maine System’s research and educational services for Maine food and agriculture.
  • Lobster Institute. The Lobster Institute’s core mission is to sustain both the lobster resource and a viable lobster fishery through conservation, outreach, research and education.
  • Maine Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit. The Cooperative Fish and Wildlife research unit strengthens professional education and training of fisheries and wildlife scientists; carries out research onaquatic, mammalian, and avian wildlife and their habitats; and disseminates research results.
  • Bear Brook Watershed in Maine. This research program on adjacent forested stream watersheds in eastern Maine is recognized internationally for its contributions to understanding the effects of elevated nitrogen and sulfur deposition on forested watersheds.

Affiliated University of Maine Centers, Institutes, & Programs

  • Senator George J. Mitchell Center for Environmental and Watershed Research. The Mitchell Center has a diverse interdisciplinary mission focusing on environmental research, graduate education, and outreach. The Mitchell Center works to provide Maine’s citizens and policymakers with unbiased and credible information that can enhance efforts to achieve healthy ecosystems, strong communities, and robust economies.
  • Maine Sea Grant. Maine Sea Grant is a state-federal partnership based at the University of Maine and sponsored by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the state of Maine. Sea Grant is part of a network of 30 Sea Grant programs throughout the coastal and Great Lakes states. It supports marine and coastal scientific research and education.
  • Climate Change Institute. CCI is an interdisciplinary research unit that conducts research and graduate education focused on variability of Earth’s climate, ecosystems, and other environmental systems and on the interaction between human beings and the natural world.
  • Maine’s Sustainability Solutions Initiative. Maine’s SSI is a partnership between the University of Maine, the University of Southern Maine, and other institutions of higher education. Its central focus is on producing knowledge and linking it to actions that meet human needs while preserving the planet’s life-support systems.
  • The Margaret Chase Smith Policy Center. The Margaret Chase Smith Policy Center is a nonpartisan, independent research and public service unit of the University of Maine. The Center is dedicated to improving and promoting the quality of public dialogue about state, regional, and national policy issues through applied policy research and projects that seek innovative solutions to practical problems.
  • Center for Tourism Research and Outreach. CenTRO is an effort by the University of Maine System to bring educational research and resources to the task of sustaining a healthy and growing tourism industry in Maine.
  • Center for Research on Sustainable Forests. CRSF work closely with University of Maine forest resources researchers, in academic fields spanning forestry, parks & recreation, soil science, resource economics, spatial engineering, and more.
  • Cooperative Forestry Research Unit:. CFRU conducts applied scientific research to provide Maine’s policymakers and forest landowners with the information necessary to ensure both sustainable forest management practices and effective public policy.
  • Forest Bioproducts Research Institute. The Forest Bioproducts Institute strives to create and commercialize new bioproducts from forests while promoting forest health for a stable bioeconomy.
  • Advanced Structures and Composites Center. The Advanced Structures and Composites Center is a state-of-the-art one-stop-shop for integrated composite materials and structural component development. It offers in-house capabilities for developing a composite product or structure from the conceptual stage through research, manufacturing of prototypes, comprehensive testing and evaluation, code approval and commercialization. The Advanced Structures and Composites Center’s research initiatives include cutting-edge materials and structures technology development for deepwater offshore wind, civil infrastructure, boat-building, residential and light commercial construction, defense, and homeland security.


  • Analytical Laboratory and Maine Soil Testing Service. Provides analytical services to the public and research staff including analyses of soil, plant tissue, compost, manure, irrigation water, wood ash, fertilizers, organic residuals and other materials for nutrient content, organic matter, lead and other trace elements. Orono campus.
  • University of Maine Animal Health Laboratory. Provides service to the veterinarians, livestock producers and pet owners of the Maine. Performs a variety of diagnostic, microbiological tests and necropsy services to help in the determination and control of the specific causes of animal health related problems. Orono campus.
  • Dr. Matthew Highlands Pilot Plant. A state-of-the-art facility committed to helping food processors, entrepreneurs, farmers, researchers, and students in the food industry. The lab offers a variety of options for anyone seeking to expand product lines, create value-added foods, solve issues in current food products, and scale up recipes for commercial production. Orono campus.
  • Food Technology–Process and Product Reviews. Provides process and product reviews to small businesses. Though initially created to serve the people of Maine, current recipients of this service also come from the neighboring states of Vermont and New Hampshire. Orono campus.
  • Chemical Food Safety Laboratory. Specializes in the development and modification of GC, HPLC and EIA methods for the analysis of a wide range of natural and man-made chemicals in both food and environmental matrices. Laboratory personnel routinely develop assays specific to client needs. Orono campus.
  • Electron Microscopy Laboratory. Offers the tools and technical expertise for research and training in microscopy with both light and electron microscopes. Orono campus.
  • Stable Isotopes Laboratory. Specializes in the measurement and interpretation of the light stable isotopic ratios of environmentally relevant elements (hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, and sulfur). Housed in the Sawyer Environmental Research Center, the SIL is primarily a facility of the Climate Change Institute and serves the research needs of the Institute faculty, staff, graduate, and undergraduate students.