The Institute was rechristened from Defence Agricultural Laboratory (DARL), which had its HQ at Pithoragarh (1524 m asl), Uttarakhand and field stations at Auli (3142 m asl) and Harsil (3242 m asl). The genesis of these units dates back to 1962 with an assigned mandate of development of sustainable and eco-friendly high altitude agro-technologies in the Himalayan region. During the 1960s, an Agriculture Research Unit (ARU) was established at Sitoli, Almora with the technical unit at Hawalbagh.
The ARU was later closed and a full-fledged Defence Agricultural Research Laboratory (DARL) came into existence during the 1990s with its HQ at Pithoragarh. Sustained and meticulous R&D at DARL over the years resulted in the release of a number of vegetable varieties suitable for mid to high altitude locations of Uttarakhand.
With the added significance of bio-energy for DRDO and its operation areas being extended to different agro-climatic zones of Country, the HQ of DARL has again been shifted to Haldwani in April 2008. During the Golden Jubilee year of DRDO, the laboratory was renamed from DARL to Defence Institute of Bio-Energy Research (DIBER) with a new mandate and thrust areas.