The EUROMARINE network has financed a foresight workshop entitled APPRISE: Anticipating Potential Pathways and Routes for Innovation towards desirable Socio-Economic impacts (focus on macro algae).
The workshop will be focused on “How do we build a competitive, sustainable and responsible European macro algae industry”.
In recent years, there has been renewed interest in the mariculture of seaweeds and their use to provide fresh edible seaweeds in Western countries, as well as to secure the provision of biomass with specific qualities to boost the growing biotechnology sector in Europe. Several pilot scale cultivation sites and a few small commercial farms throughout European waters have proven the technical feasibility of this approach. However, the costs of algal biomass production are more than 10 times higher than simply collecting wild materials. Economically viable seaweed farms in Europe are still scarce with total surface not exceeding 100-150 ha. These depend on niche markets in Europe (cosmetics, food) to survive economically. The small amount of algal cultivation in Europe at present reflects the major bottleneck which is to develop markets able to absorb European seaweed production costs.
The workshop will bring together stakeholders from all parts of the macro algae innovation ecosystem (researchers, algae producers and harvesters, processing firms, user firms, industry associations, regulators, investors and policy representatives) to provide the right mix of expertise to develop a robust analysis of the challenges ahead.
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Please contact Douglas Robinson (email@example.com) to register.