Forest Bioproducts Advanced Manufacturing Tech Hub

Tech Hubs Official Designee Badge

Lead Agency: Maine Technology Institute

State Served: Maine

Applicant-Defined Region: Portland-S.Portland; Bangor; Lewiston-Auburn; and Augusta-Waterville MSAs 

Core Technology Area: sustainable wood biomass polymers

Contact: Scott Kleiman ([email protected])

Media Contact: Victoria Foley ([email protected]) and Tony Ronzio ([email protected])

The Forest Bioproducts Advanced Manufacturing Tech Hub, led by the Maine Technology Institute, aims to become a global leader in forest-based biomaterial production and manufacturing by extracting biological building blocks from forests, manipulating them for use, and manufacturing environmentally sustainable products from those components. The Forest Bioproducts Advanced Manufacturing Tech Hub seeks to accelerate the development and deployment of these natural products which can displace plastics, sequester carbon, and replace toxic chemicals while bolstering U.S. supply chain resilience.

The Forest Bioproducts Advanced Manufacturing Tech Hub seeks to become the region of choice for firms developing, manufacturing, and selling innovative, climate-forward products derived from forests by bringing together state government, higher education institutions, industry partners, economic development organizations, and labor and workforce training organizations.

This consortium’s proposal includes plans to:

  • Establish a technology maturation program to leverage and direct new resources to accelerate promising innovations through the commercialization “valley of death;”
  • Incubate forest bioproducts startups and strengthen the bioproduct entrepreneurship ecosystem to enable new companies to scale;
  • Launch a workforce development program seeking to strengthen and diversify the talent pool throughout the value chain;
  • Manage an industry-led center to accelerate the adoption of advanced manufacturing technologies to convert forest resources into high-value feedstocks and finished products for plastics replacements;
  • Work with consortium partners to expand customer bases, document environmental impacts, and market forest bioproducts solutions; and
  • Coordinate governance, strategy, communications, risk mitigation, evaluation, and community engagement while facilitating central intake for firms seeking to engage with the Tech Hub and leading overarching evaluation activities.

To ensure that the impacts of the Tech Hub projects benefit the entire region, the consortium is committed to fostering growth in a forest supply chain across the identified geography and significantly benefitting disadvantaged and historically under-served populations.

This summary is based on information submitted by the applicants. If selected for funding, the final EDA-approved scope of work may differ.

Strategy Development Grant Amount: $494,255

Designee Narrative (PDF)

View Press Release

Additional Designations Earned in Region

Build Back Better Regional Challenge Badge Finalist
NSF Engine Development Award Badge