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Respecting our Marine Environment: Seaweed Sustainability

SeaBOS A collaboration has been formed between Swedish researchers and some of the biggest fishing companies in the world.  The aim of this collaboration is to connect scientists with businesses and encourages them to share their knowledge. It emphasises a science-business initiative for ocean stewardship, leading to improved business ethos and practice. Named SeaBOS (Seafood Business for Ocean Stewardship), it is supported by the Stockholm Resilience Centre and compromises of companies from all over the world (the first time these countries have come together with the aim to end unsustainable practices!!) The initiative was joined by ten of the largest seafood companies in the world, that have a combined annual revenue of £23bn! Sustainability Science The marine industry-academia partnership’s approach is ‘sustainability science’, with the aim to reduce harmful environmental practices like marine pollution and over fishing. Lead study author Dr Österblom, said the aim is “private corporations, which are critically dependent on a healthy ocean for their long-term prosperity, take a leading role in ocean stewardship” which will benefit the environment and businesses. PHD student, Jean-Baptiste Jouffray “the strength of our study is to report in detail on such an interaction while putting it into the broader context of sustainability science”. Other Issues Other issues in the seafood supply chain are modern slavery and the impacts on habitats and non-target species. Modern slavery was spotlighted by The Guardian in 2014, based on a six month investigation, it showed worker exploitation and deprivation of their rights. IUU stands for illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing. Pledges from SeaBOS SeaBOS have composed several pledges that they will stick by. ·         “eliminate...

How to include Seaweed in your Diet

What is it?…. Seaweed is an algae, and scientifically is referred to as marine macro-algae (that means the big algae that grows in the sea!) In general, seaweed is a highly sustainable resource, as it requires no land, freshwater or fertiliser to grow. Seaweed is possibly the most nutrient-rich superfood out there! In a recent article seaweed was named as number 4 out of the superfoods that could leave a lasting contribution on your health. Check out these recipes showing how to include Seaweed in your diet! 1. Marlene’s Macro Paella 2. Thai Crab and Seaweed Cakes 3. Parmesan, Poppy Seeds and Seaweed Biscuits 4. Roasted Beet Hummus 5. Creamy Red Lentil Soup Check out more recipes here: http://www.seaweedandco.com/seaweed-recipes/ How including Seaweed in your Diet can benefit? Salt Replacement – reducing the amount of salt in your diet, flavour and shelf life extension Seaweed has been well researched and used commercially as a natural safe salt replacement. Our Hebridean Ascophyllum Seaweed contains natural glutamates that can enhance flavours in a product. Therefore, adding seaweed in your diet will mean, requiring less or no added salt in your food, to naturally enhance flavours. Iodine – Naturally rich in iodine, allowing EU approved health claims Iodine is essential for the normal functioning of your thyroid, which has many associated health benefits in the body. Our seaweed is a great source of iodine! At Seaweed & Co. our seaweed contains levels of iodine that allow for EU Approved Health Claims including:  Weight Management – increases satiety and blood sugar regulation. Specific species of seaweed have been found in research to reduce the...

Could Superfood Seaweed help fight disease?

Consumers are becoming more health conscious and instead of just calorie counting they are learning more about a balanced diet with vitamins and minerals. So, could natural whole foods, including superfood seaweed, with numerous vitamins and minerals help prevent and fight disease? What is a Superfood? A superfood is a nutrient rich food that should have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. There is no official definition of a ‘superfood’ and in 2007 the EU has banned health claims on packaging unless supported by scientific evidence. Some examples of superfood’s that you would find everyday are: spinach; tomatoes; broccoli; and garlic. However, there are some less mainstream superfoods: sauerkraut, arugula, kale, goji berries; and seaweed! This is changing though, with many of these superfoods being seen in the supermarkets, and with more scientific evidence backing up their status. Why Superfood Seaweed? Seaweeds have a host of nutrients that could be beneficial for your health and your daily intake levels. There are many benefits of superfood seaweed! Research shows potential for reduction in fat absorption and blood sugar management.  EU Approved Health Claims even state the naturally rich level of iodine can contribute to energy yielding metabolism, and much more. Can Superfood Seaweed can prevent disease? Certain foods affect brain function more than other foods. Neuroprotection is an effect that has the capacity to salvage, regenerate and recover the nervous system. It helps in the defence of human cognitive disorders including: Dementia; Alzheimer’s disease; depression; and Bipolar disorder. A varied diet including nutrients like Zinc, B12 and Iodine affect neuroprotection[1]. Zinc is a trace element for human health, which is found in...

Seaweed Forest Display – National History Museum

The Natural History Museum (NHM), until 1992, was known as the British Museum. When the museum first opened its doors in April 1881 the main exhibition was a collection of human and animal skeletons. Along with an exhibition of dried plants. Now the NHM is hosting a display to depict an extraordinary underwater seaweed forest, in Hintze Hall! Seaweed Forest Display Discover the world of Seaweed, with a window into the world of seaweeds, a hidden habitat under threat. The Natural History Museum exhibit is a display of pressed seaweeds using different types and species to show a seaweed forest. It features three glass panels of seaweeds collected by Professor Juliet Brodie and her team, “we want to give people a sense of what it is like in the seaweed forest”. The exhibit is raising the issue of how climate change could bring an end to Algae, as rising ocean temperatures are putting some species at risk. Professor Juliet Brodie seaweed expert at the museum “we know the water is getting warmer, it has gone up by two degrees centigrade in British coastal waters over the last 40 years”. “That might not seem like a lot, but we know that its having a marked effect on some species of seaweed”. Prof. Brodie designed the work with her team, using seaweeds collected from the shallow subtidal zone and shore in Devon and Pembrokeshire.   Photo credit: Prof. Juliet Brodie, Natural History Museum History of Seaweed Fossils of some of the closest relatives of modern day kelp date back 1.6billion years.  Showing that the first living organisms before the dinosaurs was...

Seaweed Benefits for the UK with Research on Seaweed Farms

Seaweed Farming is the system of cultivating and harvesting of seaweed. This consists of controlling the life cycle of algae as much as you can. Oban is a resort town, located on Scotland’s West Coast. Up to 25,000 tourists a year visit. A trial began in April 2017, to farm seaweed near Oban. The trial site is being looked after by researchers from the world renowned Scottish Association for Marine Science at Oban. Why Oban? Seaweed isn’t just being explored in Oban it is also harvested throughout Scotland. The waters surrounding the Outer Hebrides in Scotland have been attributed to be some of the most pristine and unpolluted in the world. Hence they have been given the highest quality classification available by SEPA (Scottish Environmental Protection Agency) to reflect this. Why Farm Seaweed: Seaweed Benefits for the UK The Global value of seaweed in 2014 was 6.4billion US dollars (~£5billion). The value exceeds that of the world’s lemons and limes! As a highly sustainable resource seaweed requires no land, freshwater or fertilizer to grow. Therefore some species of seaweed are even believed to grow up to 2 feet per day! Seaweed can be used to enhance nutrition and is naturally rich in Iodine (EU Approved Health Claim). Also seaweed may be used as a salt replacement for flavour and shelf-life extension. There are numerous uses of Seaweed. Animal fodder Biofuels Beauty products and most importantly… Food and health! These uses are globally relevant, and with here at home with seaweed benefits for the UK. Seaweed is thought to have been used by early Homo sapiens. Furthermore it was used...

The benefits of algae are clear, from food to medicine to skincare

The growing interest in the benefits of algae shows just how popular the sea plant is becoming Algae is everywhere in the sea, and it could be a huge resource for many different possibilities. The benefits of algae are becoming clearer and clearer as research proves the potential of this sea plant for many different industries from cosmetics and nutritional supplements to pharmaceuticals and fertilizers. In fact, the benefits of algae could see the algae market reach almost $45 billion by 2023. So what do you need to know about the benefits of algae? Size can reveal the different benefits of algae You can broadly categorise algae as either of two options: microalgae and macroalgae. Microalgae are single-celled organisms which are mostly grown in controlled environments, like chlorella or spirulina. They are rich in protein and omega-3 fatty acids. This makes them great as an alternative to fish oil, which is becoming scarcer and more expensive. On the other hand, macroalgae are larger plants which grow in the ocean, like sea kelp and seaweed. They’re easy to grow in coastal areas, and are becoming more and more popular in food items, nutrition items, cosmetics and pharmaceuticals. These two different kinds of algae show the different potential benefits of algae available. Businesses are taking notice of the benefits of algae Companies are taking advantage of the benefits of algae for all sorts of purposes. From using microalgae as an ingredient in fish feed to growing algae as a way to create employment for women in coastal areas, there are all sorts of opportunities which the benefits of algae can provide....