Processing Your Payment

Please do not leave this page until complete. This can take a few moments.

October 17, 2019

Life sciences one of state's fast-growing industries, report says

Courtesy / Jackson Laboratory Jackson Labaratory's mouse-breeding operation in Ellsworth in one example of the state's growing life sciences industry. Jackson Lab employs more than 1,300 in a sector that has had 14% growth in the past five years.

Life sciences are among the fastest-growing industries in Maine, with job growth and wages far outpacing state averages, according to the Bioscience Association of Maine.

There are 7,433 jobs in Maine related to life sciences with a $95,000 average annual income; life sciences represent $1.5 billion of Maine's gross regional product for New England, and 5% of Maine’s total exports, according to the report. BioME in a news release said it's the first comprehensive report on the topic in a decade.

Life science job growth has increased 14% in the last five years, which has "significantly outpaced job growth in all industries in Maine," Agnieszka Carpenter, BioME executive director, said in the release. "The rapid job growth and high earnings are having a dramatic impact on Maine’s economy. The data indicate these positive trends will continue in the years to come."

Job growth overall in Maine over the past five years was 2.7%, and is expected to drop; the average wage in Maine in 2018 was $45,344, according to the state Center for Workforce Research and Information.

Life sciences involve the study of organisms, including human ones, and include biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, biomedical technologies, cosmeceuticals, food processing, environmental research, biomedical devices and and other biological and medical research and technology-related fields.

Over half of Maine’s life science jobs are in the pharmaceutical manufacturing, scientific research and development services sectors, according to BioME. Some of the largest employers in Maine’s life sciences industry are Westbrook-based IDEXX Laboratories (Nasdaq: IDXX), with more than 3,000 employees; Jackson Laboratory, a biomedical research institution in Bar Harbor, with more than 1,300; and the Kennebunk branch of Corning Inc. (NYSE: GLW), with 400-plus.

Other findings from the report showed Maine’s life sciences industry has a job multiplier of 2.71. This means that for every job the industry creates, an average of 1.71 additional jobs are created in other Maine industries. The multiplier indicates the impact of an industry on job creation and the economy; the bigger the number, the bigger the impact. Maine’s figure of 2.71 puts it ahead of all other New England states except Massachusetts, according to the release.

The entire report was scheduled to be released at BioME's annual conference today. The conference, however, was canceled because of power issues at the venue, University of Southern Maine in Portland, organizers said by email late morning.

John Konsin, CEO of Prapela Inc., which just announced it's moving operations from Massachusetts to Biddeford, was slated to be the keynote speaker.

BioME had no immediate information on when the conference will be held.

Sign up for Enews

Related Content


Order a PDF