Researchers at the UK Center for Environmental, Fisheries and Aquaculture Sciences (Cefas) say the UK seaweed industry is expected to continue to grow in the years to come. Kelp and algae species are demonstrating their ability to capture carbon and clean up ecosystems, and earn a reputation as a superfood along the way.
âThe UK seaweed industry is still in its infancy, but it is growing. Algae can be used in foods and flavorings, as well as as gelling agents for cosmetics and pharmaceuticals, âexplains Dr Elisa Capuzzo, senior scientist at Cefas.
âWork is also underway on its potential to create biofuels, bioplastics and other biomaterials that may have a lower environmental impact than existing materials,â she said.
The global seaweed industry has doubled in the past seven years and is worth an estimated Â£ 11 billion – and the UK is hoping to gain a share of that growth. The government has pledged Â£ 407,000 to establish an Algae Academy in Oban, Scotland. The facility will be the first of its kind and will advise startups, share research and host training workshops.