Journal of Applied Phycology

, Volume 24, Issue 3, pp 385–392

On-land cultivation of functional seaweed products for human usage

  • Jeff T. Hafting
  • Alan T. Critchley
  • M. Lynn Cornish
  • Scott A. Hubley
  • Allan F. Archibald
Article

DOI: 10.1007/s10811-011-9720-1

Cite this article as:
Hafting, J.T., Critchley, A.T., Cornish, M.L. et al. J Appl Phycol (2012) 24: 385. doi:10.1007/s10811-011-9720-1

Abstract

Worldwide, there has been much interest in the development and commercialization of human functional products from seaweeds. Novel seaweed compounds with potential applications as bioactive ingredients in natural health products are being isolated in a number of active research programs on this topic. The majority of these research programs do not include cultivation as a critically important component in scaling the discoveries up to commercialization (i.e., economies of scale realized). Many of these seaweeds of interest with potential as functional human products are diminutive in size, sparse in density, and seasonal in occurrence and bioactive efficacy, making commercialization by resource management and harvesting economically challenging and the application of traditional ocean-based production methods risky. Human functional products will require sustainable production coupled with quality assurance and standardized, consistent efficacy. Since humans are the consumers of these types of functional seaweed products, traceability and security of supply are of the utmost importance to successful commercialization. On-land cultivation is essential for commercial success in the development of human functional products from seaweeds at industrial scales. On-land cultivation allows the highest levels of control over quality, efficacy, traceability, and security. On-land cultivation represents the most environmentally acceptable method for the production of biomass from natural resources that could not be economically or sustainably developed any other way. However, on-land cultivation has many associated barriers to development, including high costs associated with capital, operations, maintenance, and cultivar development, and these demands limit industrial scale development of seaweed functional products for human consumption.

Keywords

Functional Seaweed Cultivation Land-based On-land Traceability Efficacy Sustainability Nutraceutical Cosmeceutical 

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jeff T. Hafting
    • 1
  • Alan T. Critchley
    • 1
  • M. Lynn Cornish
    • 1
  • Scott A. Hubley
    • 1
  • Allan F. Archibald
    • 1
  1. 1.Acadian Seaplants LimitedDartmouthCanada

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