Kelp, a type of seaweed could potentially be the future of food production.
Some of the algae, which grows fast, are seaweeds.
They consumes solar energy, essential nutrients and gases like CO2 water from the sea.
Many studies have been carried out declaring seaweed to be a game changer in helping against the ongoing fight of changing climate and food insecurity.
Fun Fact- Innovation
Among the organisms that grow at fastest rate on earth, kelp takes up one of the top positions.
The seawater from parts of coastal lagoon flows into fishponds.
Through a filtration system, it is then pumped into tanks in order to grow seaweed.
A hatchery could also be seen which is used for breeding the seedlings.
Innovation needed to be done from scratch. In Rathlin Island, Northern Ireland, the seas are thick with kelp.
Algae takes up nitrogen from the waters, sucking up all of it in a natural manner.
There is no desire for adding additional preservatives or fertilizers and water from the fish used for the growth of seaweed.
Uses of Kelp
The United Nations has declared that seaweed has unparalleled capability in dealing with the global problems such as insecurity of food and changes in climatic conditions.
It creates beneficial environments for marine life and is highly see after by the top chefs all around the world.
1. Rich Protein Source
Kelp is a rich source of large amounts of protein content.
Sometimes believed that it contains protein as high in concentration as beef.
It as seen that kelp might have the potential to create extremely nutritional and low cost diets.
Conclusively, that could ultimately give market competition to protein rich foods particularly soya bean.
2. Reduces The Risk of Type 2 Diabetes
Kelp reduces the risk of type 2 diabetes by improving the blood sugar level control and the sudden spikes of sugar are balance
3. Non-Animal Source of Vitamin B-12
Vitamin B-12 plays an important role in the activation of enzymes.
It is responsible particularly for regularly maintaining the healthy nervous system and carry out the synthesis of red blood cells.
Kelp is a good source for providing vitamin B-12. The percentages of this vitamin B-12 found in it are highly diverse.
4. Rich Iodine Source
The thyroid gland depends on iodine to make hormones. This hormone helps to control
Damaged cells repair in the body
Seaweed shows a unique ability to absorb concentrated amounts of iodine from the ocean.
5. A Brain Food
The food products based on Kelp are very famous food items in the western world.
It can be grown only as a niche food and has many significant health potential.
Kelp contains the omega-3 fatty acids, polyunsaturated fatty acids (essential) and omega-6 fatty acids.
6. Prevents Cancer
Kelp is high in antioxidants, including carotenoids and flavonoids, which help fight against disease-causing free radicals.
This prevents the chances of cancer. Antioxidant minerals, such as manganese and zinc, help to combat oxidative stress, and may help to protect cardiovascular health.
7. Absorbs Large Amounts Of CO2
According to various studies conducted, kelp forests can capture 4.4 megatons of carbon dioxide.
This sucking up of carbon dioxide occurs at a phenomenal rate. This process known as carbon sequestration.
8. Weight Loss
Kelp is low in fat and calories. It also contains a natural fiber called alginate.
Studies suggest that alginate may help stop the gut from absorbing fat.
It delays hunger thereby reducing weight.
How To Consume Kelp
The Kelp is consumed as a food or supplement. It is available in variety of forms. It can incorporated into the diet as follows;
- adding organic, dried kelp into soups and stews
- using raw kelp noodles in salads and main dishes
- sprinkling dried kelp flakes onto foods as a seasoning
- serving it cold with oil and sesame seeds
- blending it into a vegetable juice
The global seaweed industry doubled in the years between 2010 to 2020.
It largely produces approximately 30 million tonnes of kelp per year.
Due to the availability of quite little to no resources, and in extremely challenging circumstances, people in west have started to grow kelp business at small scales.
This will lead to built industry and create many jobs.
This business needs to be a hit. That could prove to be a miraculous foodstuff.
The kelp has gained the position of a sustainable food item.
That can be serve to a very useful resource for coastal communities.
Written by Maria Zeb (MSc. Hons) Food Technology, institute of Food and Nutritional Sciences, PMAS arid agriculture university Rawalpindi.