Buoy Maine

Buoy Maine Bar

BUOY MAINE: rising together during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond

About Buoy Maine

Buoy Maine is a competition to foster innovation and entrepreneurship to support Maine’s working waterfront and coastal communities. The competition will focus on strengthening coastal/marine seafood and tourism related industries, highlighting the Maine Brand and experience, building resiliency, and helping Maine’s coastal businesses survive the COVID-19 pandemic. We encourage partnerships, and will place strong emphasis on ideas and innovations that benefit Maine’s working waterfront communities as a whole.

Read more about Buoy Maine Details including Guidance for Innovators

September, 2020

The Buoy Maine team is happy to report that 15 of the 22 complete proposals will advance to the pitch competition, a closed event scheduled for October 26th and 27th! The proposal titles and organizers are:

Title: Acadia Market: A B2B/B2C Solution that Incorporates CRM and ERP Features to Bring Maine Aquaculture and Fishery Products to Market
Organizer: A. Angera, Springtide Seaweed

Title: Exploring Rope-Grown Kelp as a Fertilizer Input
Organizer: C. Ballin, Atlantic Sea Farms

Title: Marin Skincare: Value-added skincare active ingredient from lobster processors
Organizer: P. Breeding, Marin Skincare

Title: #EatMaineSeafood Campaign
Organizer: M. Coombs, Maine Coast Fishermen’s Association

Title: Recipe Ideas Scallop Cookbook
Organizer: M. Crowell

Title: Lady Shuckers
Organizer: L. Davis, Lady Shuckers

Title: Can it, Maine! Adding value and resilience to Maine’s shellfish seafood sector
Organizer: M. Dwyer, University of Maine Aquaculture Research Institute

Title: Community oyster seed shaker
Organizer: R. Earnest, Chebeague Island Oyster Co.

Title: Low Cost Environmental Observing Buoy for Ecological Monitoring and Site Prospecting
Organizer: J. Girgis

Title: Maine Oyster Trail
Organizer: A. Hupper, Maine Aquaculture Association

Title: Promoting small/family oyster farms through shared marketing of growing-regions
Organizer: J. Kramer, Winnegance Oyster Co.

Title: Maine Seafood Discovery Tours
Organizer: G. Latimer, Red Cloak Tours

Title: Marketing Downeast Gold Mussels, a Unique Maine Brand
Organizer: K. Pepperman, Downeast Institute

Title: First Annual Portland Oyster Festival & First Annual Freeport Oyster Festival Two opportunities to introduce Maine Aquaculture to Visitors
Organizer: K. Sparta, Spartan Sea Farms

Title: Damariscotta River Oysters: Maine Fresh Brand Development
Organizer: M. White, Mook Sea Farm

These finalists will be evaluated on their creativity, ability to advance the Maine brand, potential for widespread impact, and potential for transferability to other users in the state. Full details about evaluation are listed below. The final decisions of the Buoy Maine judging panel are expected to be available within two weeks of the pitch competition. Those chosen for funding will be awarded up to $15,000 for each project, with a six-month implementation window. All awarded projects will participate in a public event in Spring of 2021, to celebrate the accomplishments of all the awardees. This event will be open to the public and in person if possible, or virtual if otherwise.

Judges for the Pitch Competition

  • Martha Bentley – Director, of Economic Development Coordination, Maine Dept. of Economic and Community Development
  • John Burns – Managing Director, Maine Venture Fund
  • Tony Cameron – Chief Executive Officer, Maine Tourism Association
  • Crystal Hitchings – Program Coordinator, Sunrise County Economic Council & DownEast Acadia Regional Tourism
  • Emily Lane – Blue Lobster Consulting LLC


Email Natalie Springuel or Beth Bisson

Please note that email is the most reliable way to reach us at the moment, as we are mostly still working remotely due to COVID-19, but should contacting us by phone be more convenient for you, we will check messages regularly at (207) 288-2944 ext 5834, and call you back ASAP.


noaa logo Maine Sea Grant Independent Logo University of Maine logo
logo for maine technology institute logo for maine community foundation Maine Aquaculture Innovation Center logo
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Coastal Enterprises, Inc.
DownEast Acadia Regional Tourism
Island Institute
Maine Aquaculture Association
Maine Department of Economic & Community Development
Maine Department of Marine Resources
Maine Office of Tourism
Slow Money Maine
Sunrise County Economic Council
UMaine Office of Innovation and Economic Development