Seaweeds are sea plants, plants that grown in the sea. The nutrients / vitamins / trace elements are more readily available in seaweeds / sea plants than they are in land plants.

Eedible-seaweedSeaweeds / Algae are identified by their colors and comprise of three divisions:

  • Brown Algae / Seaweed – Phaeophyta
  • Red Algae / Seaweed – Rhodophyta
  • Green Algae / Seaweed – Chlorophyta

Algae Industry:

  • Of the global seaweed harvest 85% – 95% goes to the food industry and is worth approx €4.1 billion p. a.
  • The most valuable crop produced by seaweed aquaculture is Nori – Porphyra – a red seaweed / alga. The value of this crop is around US$ 2 billion p.a. (approx 130 t dry weight)
  • The seaweed that produces the largest amount by aquaculture is Laminaria japonica – similar to the Irish Seaweed Laminaria digitata.
  • China produces around 3.8 million tones p.a. of Laminaria japonica
  • The majority of the seaweed industry is by aquaculture in Japan, China and North & South Korea.

Use of algae:

  1. Food and food supplements – edible seaweeds / algae that are sold as sea vegetables (sea veg, sea veggies) (image: sea weed and sea weed salad)
  2. Fertilizers, liquid seaweed extracts and soil conditioners
  3. Raw material for seaweed polymers such as the alginate industry
  4. Cosmetics,bodycare,thalassotherapy and medicinal preparations.

Author: Sumana Rao | Posted on: August 19, 2015

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