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Seaweed Sustainability: Food and Non-Food Applications

Seaweed Sustainability: Food and Non-Food Applications

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Seaweed Sustainability: Food and Non-Food Applications

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994 pagine
31 ore
Pubblicato:
Aug 27, 2015
ISBN:
9780124199583
Formato:
Libro

Descrizione

Seaweed Sustainability: Food and Non-Food Applications is the only evidence-based resource that offers an abundance of information on the applications of seaweed as a solution to meet an increasing global demand for sustainable food source.

The book uncovers seaweed potential and describes the various sources of seaweed, the role of seaweeds as a sustainable source for human food and animal feeds, and the role of seaweed farming for sustainability. In addition to harvesting and processing information, the book discusses the benefits of seaweed in human nutrition and its nutraceutical properties.

  • Offers different perspectives by presenting examples of commercial utilization of wild-harvested or cultivated algae, marine and freshwater seaweeds
  • Discusses seasonal and cultivar variations in seaweeds for a better understanding of their implications in commercial applications
  • Includes a wide range of micro and macro algae for food and feed production and provides perspectives on seaweed as a potential energy source
Pubblicato:
Aug 27, 2015
ISBN:
9780124199583
Formato:
Libro

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Seaweed Sustainability - Academic Press

Seaweed Sustainability

Food and Non-Food Applications

Edited by

Brijesh K. Tiwari

Declan J. Troy

Table of Contents

Cover

Title page

Copyright

List of Contributors

Chapter 1: Seaweed sustainability – food and nonfood applications

Abstract

1. Introduction

2. Book objective

3. Book structure and content

Chapter 2: World seaweed utilization

Abstract

1. Introduction

2. Which species and where from?

3. Economic relevance of seaweeds

Chapter 3: Farming of seaweeds

Abstract

1. Introduction

2. Seaweed production and use in perspective

3. Primary production: the need and means to increase it

4. Seaweed farming principles

5. Seaweed cultivation techniques

6. Wild harvesting

7. Harvesting of cultivated seaweeds

8. Basic postharvest handling

9. Ecological and environmental impacts of seaweed farming

10. Economic and social considerations of seaweed farming

11. Opportunities and challenges

12. Conclusions: an idea whose time has come

Chapter 4: Processing of seaweeds

Abstract

1. Introduction

2. Harvesting of seaweeds

3. Storage of seaweeds

4. Drying of seaweeds

5. Processing of seaweeds for bioactives

6. Processing of seaweeds for feed

7. Processing for biofuels

8. Conclusions

Chapter 5: Chemical composition of seaweeds

Abstract

1. Introduction

2. Nutrients of seaweeds

3. Various secondary metabolites

4. Conclusions

Chapter 6: Seaweed proteins, peptides, and amino acids

Abstract

1. Introduction

2. Seaweed protein profile

3. Seaweed amino acid profile

4. Seaweed peptide profile

5. Purification technique

6. Functional properties of seaweed protein, peptides, and amino acids

7. Potential applications

8. Conclusions

Chapter 7: Seaweed carbohydrates

Abstract

1. Introduction

2. Types of carbohydrates

3. Conclusions

Chapter 8: Seaweed minor constituents

Abstract

1. Introduction

2. Minor constituents of seaweeds

3. Lipids

4. Nutritional and functional lipids

5. Bioactive carbohydrates

6. Minerals

7. Vitamins

8. Other constituents and bioactives

9. Volatile compounds in seaweed

10. Mannitol

11. Conclusions

Chapter 9: Extraction of biomolecules from seaweeds

Abstract

1. Introduction

2. Traditional extraction methods for biomolecules

3. Novel extraction techniques

Acknowledgments

Chapter 10: Analytical techniques for bioactives from seaweed

Abstract

1. Introduction

2. Sample preparation

3. Chromatography

4. Hyphenated chromatographic techniques

5. Conclusions

Chapter 11: Seaweed and food security

Abstract

1. Introduction

2. The food security threat

3. Seaweed as a food staple

4. Seaweed farming opportunities and challenges

5. Making a start: an experience in tropical seaweed cultivation and use as food

6. Conclusions

Chapter 12: Identification and selection of algae for food, feed, and fuel applications

Abstract

1. Introduction

2. Algal biomass production and utilization

3. Biochemical composition of algae

4. Selection criteria of algal biomass for food, feed, and fuel applications

5. Algae as a component of food

6. Algae as a component of feed

7. Algae as a component of fuel

8. Challenges and future prospects

9. Conclusions

Chapter 13: Seaweeds: a sustainable food source

Abstract

1. Introduction

2. History of seaweeds for human food

3. Scope of seaweed as a sustainable source

4. Seaweeds in the food chain

5. Safety around seaweed consumption

6. Challenges and opportunities

7. Conclusions

Chapter 14: Seaweeds: a nutraceutical and health food

Abstract

1. Introduction

2. Generation of macroalgal protein concentrates and important techno-functional attributes

3. Macroalgae in healthcare and cosmetic applications

4. Sustainability of seaweed supply

5. Regulations governing macroalgal use

6. Conclusions

Chapter 15: Seaweeds: a sustainable feed source for livestock and aquaculture

Abstract

1. Introduction

2. Scope of seaweed as a sustainable feed source

3. Implications and future recommendations

4. Conclusions

Chapter 16: Seaweeds: a sustainable fuel source

Abstract

1. Introduction

2. Potential seaweeds for biofuel production

3. Biofuel conversion technologies suitable for seaweed biomass

4. Conclusions

Acknowledgments

Subject Index

Copyright

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List of Contributors

Carlos Álvarez,     Department of Food Biosciences, Teagasc Food Research Centre, Ashtown, Dublin, Ireland

Jessica Balbas,     School of Applied Sciences, Faculty of Health and Environmental Sciences, Auckland University of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand

Sayvisene Boulom,     School of Applied Sciences, Faculty of Health and Environmental Sciences, Auckland University of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand

Lynn Cornish,     Department of Biology, St. Francis Xavier University, Antigonish, Canada

Holly Cronin,     Department of Geography, McGill University, Montreal, Canada and Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Panama

Sharon Rose B. de la Rama,     Department of Chemical Engineering, School of Engineering, Nagoya University, Nagoya, Japan

John Forster,     Forster Consulting Inc., Port Angeles, WA, USA

Nazimah Hamid,     School of Applied Sciences, Faculty of Health and Environmental Sciences, Auckland University of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand

Tatsuya Hasegawa,     Department of Aerospace Engineering, School of Engineering, Nagoya University, Nagoya, Japan and Division of Green Conversion, EcoTopia Science Institute, Nagoya University, Nagoya, Japan

Maria Hayes,     Teagasc Food Research Centre, Ashtown, Dublin, Ireland

Mohammad Hossain,     Teagasc Food Research Centre, Ashtown, Dublin, Ireland

Jing Hu,     CAS Key Laboratory of Tropical Marine Bio-resources and Ecology (LMB), South China Sea Institute of Oceanology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou, China

Shekhar U. Kadam,     School of Biosystems and Food Engineering, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin, Ireland

Se-Kwon Kim,     Department of Marine-bio Convergence Science, Pukyong National University, Busan, Republic of Korea

Xiu-Ping Lin,     CAS Key Laboratory of Tropical Marine Bio-resources and Ecology (LMB), South China Sea Institute of Oceanology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou, China

Tingting Liu,     School of Applied Sciences, Faculty of Health and Environmental Sciences, Auckland University of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand

Yonghong Liu,     CAS Key Laboratory of Tropical Marine Bio-resources and Ecology (LMB), South China Sea Institute of Oceanology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou, China

Qianli Ma,     School of Applied Sciences, Faculty of Health and Environmental Sciences, Auckland University of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand

Kritika Mahadevan,     Food and Consumer Technology, Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester, UK

Gian Powell B. Marquez,     Department of Aerospace Engineering, School of Engineering, Nagoya University, Nagoya, Japan

N.N. Misra,     Dublin Institute of Technology, Dublin, Ireland and present address: General Mills India, Mumbai, India

Flower E. Msuya,     Institute of Marine Sciences, University of Dar es Salaam, Mizingani Road, Zanzibar, Tanzania

Amir Neori,     Israel Oceanographic and Limnological Research Ltd, National Center for Mariculture, Eilat, Israel

Colm P. O’Donnell

School of Biosystems and Food Engineering, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin, Ireland

Department of Food Biosciences, Teagasc Food Research Centre, Ashtown, Dublin, Ireland

Francesco Ometto,     Research and Development Department, Scandinavian Biogas Fuels AB, Stockholm, Sweden

Ratih Pangestuti,     Research Center for Oceanography, Indonesian Institute of Sciences, Jakarta, Republic of Indonesia

Yan Peng

Department of Biotechnology, School of Life Science & Technology, Zhanjiang Normal University, Zhanjiang, PR China

CAS Key Laboratory of Tropical Marine Bio-resources and Ecology (LMB), South China Sea Institute of Oceanology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou, China

Ricardo Radulovich,     Department of Biosystems Engineering, University of Costa Rica, San José, Costa Rica

Dilip K. Rai,     Teagasc Food Research Centre, Ashtown, Dublin, Ireland

Gaurav Rajauria,     Department of Animal & Crop Sciences, School of Agriculture and Food Science, University College Dublin, Lyons Research Farm, Newcastle, Co. Dublin, Ireland

C.R.K. Reddy,     CSIR-Central Salt and Marine Chemicals Research Institute, Bhavnagar, Gujarat, India

Laurie-Eve Rioux,     Department of Food Science, Institute of Nutrition and Functional Food, Université Laval, Quebec City, QC, Canada

John Robertson,     School of Applied Sciences, Faculty of Health and Environmental Sciences, Auckland University of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand

Wilfred John E. Santiañez,     The Marine Science Institute, University of the Philippines, Diliman, Quezon City, Philippines

Hisae Takeuchi,     Division of Green Conversion, EcoTopia Science Institute, Nagoya University, Nagoya, Japan

Brijesh K. Tiwari,     Department of Food Biosciences, Teagasc Food Research Centre, Ashtown, Dublin, Ireland

Gavino C. Trono, Jr.,     The Marine Science Institute, University of the Philippines, Diliman, Quezon City, Philippines

Declan J. Troy,     Department of Food Biosciences, Teagasc Food Research Centre, Ashtown, Dublin, Ireland

Sylvie L. Turgeon,     Department of Food Science, Institute of Nutrition and Functional Food, Université Laval, Quebec City, QC, Canada

Diego Valderrama,     Food and Resource Economics Department, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, USA

Raffaella Villa,     Bioenergy and Resource Management Centre, School of Energy, Environment and Agrifood, Cranfield University, Bedford, UK

William Lindsey White,     Institute of Applied Ecology, Auckland University of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand

Peter Wilson,     Institute of Applied Ecology, Auckland University of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand

Bin Yang,     CAS Key Laboratory of Tropical Marine Bio-resources and Ecology (LMB), South China Sea Institute of Oceanology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou, China

Xian-Wen Yang,     CAS Key Laboratory of Tropical Marine Bio-resources and Ecology (LMB), South China Sea Institute of Oceanology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou, China

Zihui Zheng,     School of Applied Sciences, Faculty of Health and Environmental Sciences, Auckland University of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand

Xue-Feng Zhou,     CAS Key Laboratory of Tropical Marine Bio-resources and Ecology (LMB), South China Sea Institute of Oceanology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou, China

Chapter 1

Seaweed sustainability – food and nonfood applications

Brijesh K. Tiwari

Declan J. Troy    Department of Food Biosciences, Teagasc Food Research Centre, Ashtown, Dublin, Ireland

Abstract

At present sustainability is one of the main societal challenges. The core objective of global sustainability is to match the supply of food, feed, and fuel with the demand of the world’s growing population in the most appropriate way possible. As we look toward unlocking the potential of our seas and oceans as a reserve of much needed resources to sustain our planet while protecting, improving, and helping our seas and oceans to flourish in order to increase their value to the economy, society, and the environment. Cultivation of seaweed has the capacity to grow massive amounts of nutrient-rich food for human consumption. Ocean farms are seemingly more sustainable compared to land-based agriculture because cultivation of seaweeds requires no fresh water, chemical fertilizer, or land, which are the significant negative factors to land-based cultivation. Apart from being an excellent source of food, seaweeds can be a substantial feedstock for biomass, biofuel production, and for animal feeds.

Keywords

Porphyra yezoensis

Saccharina japonica

seaweeds

Undaria pinnatifida

1. Introduction

At present sustainability is one of the main societal challenges. The core objective of global sustainability is to match the supply of food, feed, and fuel with the demand of the world’s burgeoning population in the most appropriate way possible. With the era of seemingly plentiful and cheap resources coming to an end, and with the combined impacts of climate change and current agriculture production and consumption patterns undermining our planetary habitat, it has been estimated that based on current trends, the equivalent of more than two planet Earths will be needed by 2050 to support the growing global population. As we look toward unlocking the potential of our seas and oceans as a reserve of much needed resources to sustain our planet, our responsibility is to do so while protecting, improving, and helping our seas and oceans to flourish in order to increase their value to the economy, society, and the environment. Cultivation of seaweed has the capacity to grow massive amounts of nutrient-rich food for human consumption. Ocean farms are seemingly more sustainable compared to land-based agriculture because cultivation of seaweeds requires no fresh water, chemical fertilizer, or land, which constitute some of the significant negative factors to land-based cultivation. Apart from being an excellent source of food, seaweeds can be a substantial feedstock for biomass, biofuel production, and for animal feeds.

1.1. History of seaweeds

Seaweeds have been used all over the world for thousands of years for various food and nonfood applications. Traditionally, in China, Korea, and Japan seaweed has been used as food for over 2000 years. In Japan seaweed is used to make nori from Porphyra species, which is a dried sheet of seaweed used in the preparation of sushi. In Malaysia and Indonesia seaweeds are eaten fresh as salad. South East Asian countries have a long history of seaweed application in food whereas the application of seaweeds in the western world was mainly associated with nonfood applications. In Greece seaweeds were used to feed animals as early as 100 BC. In Mediterranean countries red seaweeds were used for medicinal purposes. In Ireland and Scotland seaweeds were used by farmers for agricultural applications, such as, mulch for soils. The most common system for seaweeds in Europe is harvesting of natural stocks whereas in Asian countries seaweeds are cultivated for various applications.

1.2. Relevance of seaweeds

Seaweeds, which are often neglected or ignored, have significant academic, biological, environmental, and economic roles in the coastal ecosystem. The term seaweeds (sea and weed) often invokes an image of smelly and rotting masses found on beaches, which does not present a positive image in various western countries. Kaiso is a generic Japanese term for all varieties of edible seaweeds derived from the term kia (ocean), which can represent water, plants, and trees – a more acceptable term representing photosynthetic organisms from oceans (Nisizawa, 2002). China is the major producer of seaweeds, followed by Japan and Korea. Most people around the world knowingly or unknowingly use seaweed or products derived from seaweeds in various forms, including processed dairy, meat, and fruit products as well as domestic commodities like paint, toothpaste, solid air fresheners, cosmetics, and pharmaceuticals (Dhargalkar and Pereira, 2005).

Nowadays, the seaweed processing industry in Europe is comprised of several sectors including biopolymers, cosmetics, agrifood, and functional food additives with various health properties. In the European Union, seaweeds are primarily used for the commercial production of additives for both food and nonfood applications (e.g., alginates). Like any processing industry, the production of additives from algae generates several by-products and waste, which are usually discarded. Disposal of these by-products is not justified from the economic, social, and environmental perspective, given the fact that these by-products contain valuable bioactives (e.g., health-promoting biochemicals), fine biochemicals (e.g., dyes and pigments), and biomolecules (e.g., proteins, oils, etc.). Bioactives from seaweed processing waste are reported to possess several biological activities including (i) antimicrobial activity (disinfection), (ii) antioxidant activity (potential replacement for chemical antioxidants used in the food industry), and (iii) inhibition of lipid peroxidation, antiproliferative activity, antidiabetic effect, and anti-inflammatory substances for various pharmaceutical and nutraceutical applications. Seaweeds have also been investigated for fuel applications. Integrated biorefinery solutions will allow sufficient scale to enable the economic production of fuel from seaweeds (Boxes 1.1–1.3).

Box 1.1

Saccharina/Laminaria is one of the most important macroalgal genera of brown algae (Phaeophyceae) in temperate to polar rocky coastal ecosystems, especially in the northern hemisphere. It is chiefly found in the northern Pacific Ocean and the northern Atlantic Ocean at depths from 8 m to 30 m. Exceptionally, it was found at a depth of 120 m in the warmer waters of the Mediterranean Sea and Brazil. Recently, the genera Saccharina/Laminaria was shown to be polyphyletic and a separation into the two genera Laminaria and a resurrected Saccharina was proposed (Figure 1.1).

Box 1.2

Undaria is a genus of kelp that includes a few species, such as Undaria pinnatifida, Undaria crenata, Undaria peterseniana, and Undaria undarioides. It grows from the low intertidal area to subtidal depths of around 15 m on any hard surface including shells, reefs, ropes, wharf piles, vessel hulls, moorings, and other artificial structures.

U. pinnatifida (Figure 1.2) is the most common and widely distributed species in genus Undaria. It is native to the northwestern Pacific coast, mainly Japan, Korea, southeastern Russia, and some eastern parts of China. It occurs widely around the world and now can be found in Europe (France, Spain, Italy, Britain, Belgium, and Holland), the United States (California), Mexico, Argentina, Australia, and New Zealand due to accidental introduction and cultivation. U. peterseniana and U. undarioides are found in Japan and South Korea and U. crenata in Udo Strait, Cheja, Korea.

Box 1.3

Porphyra, commonly known as nori, is the name for a genus of red algae that grows in intertidal to shallow subtidal areas of coastal waters around the world. The major areas where Porphyra is grown in commercial aquaculture are China, Japan, and the Republic of Korea (South Korea). In China, Porphyra yezoensis (Figure 1.3) is mainly found in Jiangsu Province. Porphyra haitanensis is mainly found in Zhejiang, Fujian, and Guangdong provinces.

Figure 1.1   Saccharina japonica Source: Painting drawn by Chen Jiaxin.

Figure 1.2   U. pinnatifida Source: Painting drawn by Chen Jiaxin.

Figure 1.3   P. yezoensis Source: Painting drawn by Zhu Guotao.

2. Book objective

The overarching objective of this book on seaweeds is to provide information on seaweeds and their potential food and nonfood applications for multidisciplinary professionals, educators, industry personnel involved with food, feed, and fuel applications of seaweeds, and researchers providing up-to-date insight into seaweed processing and utilization. Various aspects of seaweed sources, characterization, harvesting, processing, and applications for human food, animal feed, and fuel are highlighted.

3. Book structure and content

The book contains 16 chapters outlining sources and processing aspects of seaweeds; characterizations and compositional analysis of seaweeds, which finds applications in various sectors and applications of seaweeds in various sectors. Worldwide production and utilization of seaweeds for various purposes is outlined in Chapter 2. Chapter 3 describes the fundamentals of seaweed farming, harvest, and postharvest techniques, ecological and economic considerations, and a perspective on opportunities and challenges. Chapter 4 outlines various aspects of seaweed processing and unit operations including harvesting, drying, and storage of seaweeds for food and nonfood applications. Chemical characterization and composition of seaweeds, including major and minor constituents, are discussed in Chapters 5, 6, 7, and 8. Seaweeds are an excellent source of phenolics, polysaccharides, proteins, peptides, and pigments. Various conventional and novel extraction techniques employed for the extraction of biomolecules from seaweeds are outlined in Chapter 9 and Chapter 10 outlines a wide range of conventional and novel sample preparation techniques for accurate identification and quantification using various chromatographic methods. The relevance of seaweeds and future challenges for seaweed production and utilization are discussed in Chapter 11. Chapter 12 outlines the potential of algae for food, feed, and fuel applications along with the importance of algal strain selection for identified applications. Finally, Chapters 13, 14, 15, and 16 outline food, nutraceuticals, feed, and fuel applications of seaweeds.

References

Dhargalkar V, Pereira N. Seaweed: promising plant of the millennium. Sci. Cult. 2005;71(3–4):60–66.

Nisizawa K. Seaweeds Kaiso: Bountiful Harvest From the Seas. Japan Seaweed Association; 2002: 106p.

Chapter 2

World seaweed utilization

William Lindsey White

Peter Wilson    Institute of Applied Ecology, Auckland University of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand

Abstract

Worldwide, some 291 species of seaweeds are used by humans, mainly for food and hydrocolloid production (e.g., alginates, agar, and carrageenan) and also for medicines, paper, fertilizer, and animal feed. In 2012 close to 21 million t wet weight of seaweeds were used, with just over 20 million t of that cultured as opposed to wild harvest. Production is dominated by Indonesia, China, and the Philippines. Indonesia produces 5.7 million t of Eucheuma. China produces large amounts of Laminaria (4.8 million t), Gracilaria (1.9 million t), Undaria (1.7 million t), and Porphyra (1.1 million t). In the Philippines, Eucheuma dominates with 1.7 million t produced. These five seaweeds made up 96.7% of the total seaweed harvest in 2012.

Keywords

aquaculture

Eucheuma

Gracilaria

harvesting

Laminaria

Porphyra

seaweeds

Undaria

1. Introduction

In 1999 one of us (WLW) published a summary of world seaweed utilization (Zemke-White and Ohno, 1999). At the time, reliable data on seaweed harvesting and farming were difficult to come by, and so the data were extracted from the book Seaweeds of the World, edited by Alan Critchley and Masao Ohno. This resource was updated in 2006 and produced as a CD-ROM entitled World Seaweed Resources (Critchley et al., 2006). Since this time, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has compiled and made freely available a dataset of all reported fisheries and aquaculture landings from 1952 to the present (the latest data are currently from 2012). While it is likely that these data are somewhat under-reporting the landings of various species, it is the most current and accurate dataset available.

To provide an update on Zemke-White and Ohno (1999), we obtained the reported seaweed production weights from the FAO (2014) dataset. The detail of the reported seaweed classification ranged from phylum/family level right down to individual species. When the seaweed was not reported to the species level, we used Critchley et al. (2006) to elucidate genera or species where possible. This resource was the primary source of information on economic seaweed species. We further supplemented country-specific seaweed species from the relevant literature that was found by Google Scholar using the following search terms: seaweed, aquaculture, production, and country. The literature used for each country is listed in Table 2.1.

Table 2.1

Sources of Information on Country-Specific Seaweed Information

A direct comparison between Zemke-White and Ohno (1999) and these current data is difficult as the former reported dry weight landings, while the FAO report used wet weight. However, using a dry:wet weight conversion, some comparisons are possible. Certainly the actual species that are utilized and their source countries can be compared for changes over the past 10–15 years.

As mentioned earlier, the way data are reported in the FAO dataset means that it is not always possible to determine the species being reported. Sometimes only the higher level grouping of Chlorophyte, Phaeophyte, or Rhodophyte (for green, brown, and red seaweeds, respectively) was reported. There are also issues with particular species groupings. For example, various species of the genera Eucheuma and Kappaphycus are farmed extensively and almost all for the production of carrageenan. To avoid confusion we have referred to all of these as Eucheuma. Likewise all species of Undaria are grouped under that genus. Renaming of species and/or genera can also be confusing. In 2006 the genus Laminaria was split and 18 of its species were put into the resurrected genus of Saccharina (Lane et al., 2006), including Saccharina japonica, one of the most cultured seaweeds. As the FAO and others still use the old genus for reporting landings, we have grouped Saccharina with the Laminaria genus for Table 2.3 and Figure 2.2. For the remainder of this chapter, all data are reported in wet weight of seaweeds unless otherwise stated.

2. Which species and where from?

In total at least 291 species are used worldwide from 43 countries (Table 2.2). This is an increase of 50 species since 1995 and comprises 33 chlorophytes (up from 32 in 1995), 75 phaeophytes (up from 64 in 1995), and 163 rhodophytes (up from 125 in 1995).

Table 2.2

Seaweed Species Used Worldwide

F, food; A, agar; C, carrageenan; Al, alginates; M, medicine; RoK, roe on kelp; Ag, agricultural; P, paper.

2.1. Current production

Worldwide almost 21 million t of seaweeds are utilized (Table 2.3), with less than 800,000 t of this being harvested from the wild and the remaining 94% produced by aquaculture. Production is dominated by Indonesia, China, and the Philippines. Indonesia produces 5.7 million t of Eucheuma (27% of total world seaweed production in 2012). China produces large amounts of Laminaria (4.8 million t; 23% of total), Gracilaria (1.9 million t; 9% of total), Undaria (1.7 million t; 8% of total), and Porphyra (1.1 million t; 5% of total). In the Philippines, Eucheuma dominates with 1.7 million t produced, 8% of the total global seaweed production.

Table 2.3

Worldwide Production of Seaweeds by Genera in 2012

Source: FAO (2014).

Where only the higher-level taxon was reported (Phyla or family), genera listed as Unknown.

2.2. Trends in production

There has been a massive increase in the amount of seaweed used since 1995 (Figures 2.1 and 2.2), with a total of 7,546,754 t in 1995 increasing by 176% to 20,893,372 in 2012. This is largely driven by growth in the seaweed farming activities of Indonesia, China, and the Philippines. In Indonesia, Eucheuma/Kappaphycus farming increased from around 50,000 t in 1995 to over 5.7 million t in 2012. In China, Undaria was not cultured until the early 2000s and they are now producing 1.75 million t; Laminaria increased by over 1 million t from 1995 to 2012; Gracilaria was barely farmed at all in 1995 and in 2012 China produced 1.9 million t; and finally, Porphyra increased from ∼200,000 to over 1.1 million t. In the Philippines, Eucheuma farming increased from around 100,000 t in 1995 to over 1.1 million t in 2012.

Figure 2.1   World Seaweed Utilization from 1952 to 2012 Source: FAO (2014).

Figure 2.2   Utilization of the Top Five Genera from 1952 to 2012. Eucheuma spp. and Kappaphycus spp. are Grouped under Eucheuma Source: FAO (2014).

An interesting and important trend in terms of the sustainability (both ecological and economic) of the seaweed industry is the growth in seaweed farming as well as a decline in seaweed wild harvest. In 1995 around 3.9 million t was harvested, 52% of all seaweeds used. In 2012, only 792,383 t were harvested, comprising only 4% of all seaweed use. As above, much of this change is being driven by the growth in the seaweed farming industries of Laminaria, Undaria, Gracilaria, and Porphyra in China and Eucheuma/Kappaphycus in Indonesia.

2.3. Trends in consumption

The vast majority (∼83%) of the seaweeds harvested and cultured are consumed by humans (Loureiro et al., 2015), either as a direct food source, such as wakame from Undaria pinnatifida and kombu from S. japonica (formerly Laminaria japonica), or as a food additive, such as carrageenan from Eucheuma spp. and mannitol, alginate, and iodine from S. japonica. There has been a steady increase in the consumption of S. japonica since reporting started. Since the farming of Eucheuma started in earnest in the late 1990s, there has been an exponential growth in consumption of this seaweed, while the other main genera have experienced smaller but significant increases in consumption.

In recent years, research on the health benefits of seaweeds has shown that they contain a range of bioactive compounds that perform an important role in modulating chronic disease. The benefits to human health from seaweeds include antioxidant, anticoagulant, antithrombotic, anti-inflammatory, antitumor/antiproliferation/anticancer/antimetastatic, antivirus, inhibitory effect on parasites, antidepression effects, immunostimulatory effects, protective effects on the nervous system, and therapeutic effects in surgery and brain injury (summarized in White et al., 2014).

3. Economic relevance of seaweeds

Accurate data on the economic importance of seaweed across sectors are difficult to find. Unfortunately, the FAO database does not contain the dollar value of seaweed production across the various types of seaweed and seaweed product. They only record export dollars, and since much of the seaweed produced will be consumed locally, this gives only a glimpse of the value (Figure 2.3). To determine an approximate economic value for the main five genera produced, we determined the range of wholesale prices for dried seaweed and converted the wet weight to dry weight, using values from the literature (Table 2.4). This gives an estimate of the wholesale value of the global annual seaweed production of between US$10.1 and US$16.1 billion in 2012.

Figure 2.3  

Export Values of Seaweeds by Continent since 1976 Source: FAO (2014).

Table 2.4

Estimate of Wholesale Value of Main Five Genera of Seaweeds in 2012

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Chapter 3

Farming of seaweeds

Ricardo Radulovich*

Amir Neori**

Diego Valderrama

C.R.K. Reddy

Holly Cronin§

John Forster

*    Department of Biosystems Engineering, University of Costa Rica, San José, Costa Rica

**    Israel Oceanographic and Limnological Research Ltd, National Center for Mariculture, Eilat, Israel

†    Food and Resource Economics Department, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, USA

‡    CSIR-Central Salt and Marine Chemicals Research Institute, Bhavnagar, Gujarat, India

§    Department of Geography, McGill University, Montreal, Canada and Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Panama

¶    Forster Consulting Inc., Port Angeles, WA, USA

Abstract

Seaweed farming at sea is becoming an increasingly competitive biomass production candidate for food and related uses. With exponential growth over recent decades, farmed seaweed output reached 24 million tons by 2012. However, just eight Asian nations produced 99% of that while most of the world’s 150 countries and territories with coasts were yet to begin seaweed farming. Using current technology, extensively available sea areas may be cultivated to produce crops that require no freshwater or fertilizers, while providing a variety of valuable ecosystem services. Following a deductive or principle-based approach that establishes primary production from seaweed biosynthesis as a basis of food production, this chapter describes the fundamentals of seaweed farming, harvest and postharvest techniques, ecological and economic considerations, and a perspective on opportunities and challenges. The objective is to provide both an overall account of the state of the art on seaweed farming as well as a contribution to the industry’s sustainable development.

Keywords

aquaculture

aquatic agriculture

climate change

coastal

food production

free-floating

macroalgae

sea farming

seaweed cultivation

seaweed harvesting

water shortage

1. Introduction

Farming of seaweeds at sea is a relatively young and robust form of aquaculture. World production has been characterized by exponential growth during the last 50 years (Loureiro et al., 2015) and it tripled between 1997 and 2012, from 7 million tons to 24 million tons (Mt) (FAO, 2014). As such, seaweeds may one day play a much bigger role in food supply (see Chapter 11). While seaweed farming is expanding rapidly in a few countries and slowly gaining acceptance in others, it is still far from becoming a common practice in most of the ∼150 countries and territories of the world endowed with coasts. However, the already significant increase in the production of and demand for farmed seaweeds is indicative of their potential as a significant complement to agricultural crops. Besides extensive coastal areas, vast expanses of sea might be turned into ecofriendly cultivated fields. Using current technologies and culture concepts, such large-scale production would yield massive amounts of seaweed biomass in a controlled manner for a variety of uses. Seaweeds for food, feed, and, possibly, for biofuels as well as for a variety of specialty biochemicals can be produced without arable land, freshwater, or fertilizer. Furthermore, seaweed cultivation provides a variety of ecosystem services, which are valuable ecologically and economically (Neori et al., 2007; Chopin, 2014; Radulovich et al., 2015).

Expansion of seaweed farming to scales that approach conventional agriculture depends on the demand for seaweeds and their products, development of farming methods that compete in cost and scale, and recognition of the ecological services seaweed farms can provide. Excepting specialty and gourmet products, global demand for seaweeds is closely dependent on whether agriculture will satisfy growing food, feed, and biofuel needs, a role that is questionable at present and perhaps doubtful for the future (OECD-FAO, 2012; FAO, 2013b; Garnett et al., 2013; IFPRI, 2015). This codependency, however, may shift as farmed-seaweed products gain status as food and for other uses on their own merits.

Overall, as is often the case with new activities, a vicious cycle inhibits the advancement of seaweed farming and use in most countries, where there is no supply because there is no demand, and there is no demand because there is no supply. This inertia is being actively addressed in many parts of the world as evidenced by the growing body of literature promoting or describing seaweed farming and use (e.g., Teitelbaum, 2003; Lee, 2008; Neori, 2008; Robaina Romero et al., 2008; Edwards and Watson, 2011; Msuya, 2011; Winberg et al., 2011; Al-Hafedh et al., 2012; De San, 2012; Jaspars and Folmer, 2013; Mouritsen, 2013; 2013, 2015; Valderrama et al., 2013; Hayashi et al., 2014; Hurd et al., 2014; Philippsen et al., 2014; Rebours et al., 2014; Redmond et al., 2014a,b; SINTEF, 2014; Baghel et al., 2015; Loureiro et al., 2015).

However, the need for regulations and the establishment of ‘best practices’ for seaweed harvesting, management and cultivation has been noted (Rebours et al., 2014), and these must be developed and applied. As the general principles and purposes that determine seaweed farming are consolidated, a deductive or principle-based approach will strengthen the prevailing inductive or case-based approach, contributing to the next

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