In western cultures, certain cyanobacteria have beenan accepted source of microalgal biomass for food forabout 30 years, in particular Spirulina(Arthrospira) platensis and S. maxima. Beginning in the early 1980s, another species, Aphanizomenon flos-aquae was adopted for similaruses. This is harvested from Upper Klamath Lake, thelargest freshwater lake system in Oregon. In 1998 theannual commercial production of Aphanizomenonflos-aquae was about 1 × 106 kg. Since thisspecies is not cultured like Spirulina inoutdoor ponds or raceways, it requires very differentprocedures for harvesting and processing. These arereviewed here and include extensive off-lake screensor on-lake barges, which dewater and concentrate thecells. Other procedures, such as those for removal ofdetritus and mineral materials, and those formonitoring and reducing the amounts of certaincontaminant cyanobacteria, which can producecyanotoxins, have also become important in qualitycontrol and marketing.
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Carmichael, W.W., Drapeau, C. & Anderson, D.M. Harvesting of Aphanizomenon flos-aquae Ralfs ex Born. & Flah. var. flos-aquae (Cyanobacteria) from Klamath Lake for human dietary use. Journal of Applied Phycology 12, 585–595 (2000). https://doi.org/10.1023/A:1026506713560
- Aphanizomenon flos-aquae
- blue-green algae
- Klamath Lake
- quality control