Fiji seaweed industry expands to meet growing demand
Though once primarily restricted to specific regions of the world, the seaweed industry has grown by leaps and bound as the global population has learned more about the considerable benefits of this abundant sea vegetable. Cooking with seaweed has become more commonplace in Western countries, due at least in part to a greater focus on nutrition and eco-consciousness. In addition, biotech entrepreneurs have also tapped into this versatile natural resource to create an alternative to fossil fuels.
Because of this increased awareness, demand for seaweed has soared around the world. Recently, the Fiji Times reported that the country's government will be investing directly into this industry to help local seaweed farmers fill the endless supply of orders.
"The market demands a lot of seaweed but we are short of it. So the [Integrated Human Resource Development Programme] from the National Planning and Fisheries are working together on this project to increase the production," said Fiji's Divisional Commissioner Central Divisional Commissioner Central Laisenia Tuitubou.
As well as providing additional financial support for those who already specialize in seaweed farming, the new endeavor will also focus on encouraging more residents of Sawakasa in the region of Tailevu to take up this profitable trade, boosting the local economy and providing new job opportunities for the general population.
"We are trying to label this as the crop of the millennium," Jope Kavoa, principal fisheries officer, told the news outlet.
Given the seemingly boundless benefits of seaweed for health and the environment as a whole, it's a wonder that demand for this versatile sea vegetable didn't ramp up sooner. Seagreens® seaweed is sustainably wild-harvested in Grade A pristine waters in the Scottish Outer Hebrides, and can boost the nutritional value and enhance the flavor of your meals as The Mineral Salt and the Culinary Ingredient.