We are supporting the development of new products, from food to pharma- and cosmeceuticals, and new cultivation methodologies to meet the needs of the national and global market. We are involved in co-operations and frequent academic exchanges with reputable universities and institutes from home and abroad. We are involved in developing cutting-edge technologies to harness the benefits of seaweed and create value-added products in local communities. We hot bed new businesses and support product innovation.
The aim of Product Innovation is to strengthen rural coastal communities and allow them to compete on the global stage. Demand driven product innovation will create employment through the development and production of high quality products using extracts from Irish sea-plants.
We are working with partners to develop new technologies to harness some of the vast commercial potential of Irish seaweed. Energy efficient extraction and quality validation techniques help to produce many valued commodities from seaweed such as fucoidan, alginate, protein, iodine, minerals and calcium in scale-able quantities. By creating valued products using the high quality plants growing in the clear and pristine waters off the coast of Ireland, jobs and careers can be built in challenged regions where employment is scarce and infrastructure is poor. Once achieved, the model has global potential for most rural coastal locations.
Product innovation addresses a number of issues, not only the commercial potential of seaweed, but also the humanitarian issues surrounding the creation of jobs and the forthcoming protein shortage as the global population continues to expand. With some plants having in excess of 40% protein, sea-vegetables will become an increasingly important source of nutrients for human populations.
After decades of investment into scientific research, it is recognised that we know and understand more about space than we do about the oceans which cover 70% of our planet. The benefits that the space program has attributed to everyday living such as non-stick pans, is only a fraction of what can be realised and can be readily applied to everyday living in a multitude of cultures once the oceans' potential is realised.
The known benefits of many of the bio-active ingredients from sea plants such as anti-toxin, antiseptic, anti-cancer, anti-aging are used for a wide range of cosmetic and pharmaceutical applications with many applications still to be identified. Through technological innovations we can start to realise some of the vast wealth that the oceans have to offer the human race.
By creating a range of food products and ingredients for both human and animal consumption, we can support many dietary requirements and provide an alternative source of protein, carbohydrate and minerals that do not need land or fresh water to be cultivated. This will become increasingly important as we go through climate change and sea level rises, losing many of our precious, fertile river deltas to flooding.