Accelerating Algae Into Our Food System
Algae have tremendous potential to deliver nutrient-dense food to address global challenges in food production and health. Algae produce high-quality proteins, carbohydrates, and oils in an efficient and scalable manner. Production systems for algae often have low environmental impact reducing the use of potable water, arable land, and fossil-based energy. Algae have been in our food system for centuries with a few varieties popularized in the last few decades including seaweed, spirulina, chlorella, astaxanthin, and omega 3 fatty acids (DHA & EPA). Although algae offer enormous potential for food production, additional development and infrastructure buildout is required to scale and enable economic production of algae-based food products. Governments around the world acknowledge the potential of algae and are actively investing in further development of algae for food and feed. For example, as part of the 2018 Farm Bill, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) was directed to classify algae as a crop for the first time. Now is the time to invest in a new Green Revolution that can deliver nutritious and sustainable food solutions.