While there is upwards of 30 million tonnes of seaweed farmed across the globe annually with a value of USD$15 billion, New Zealand contributes only approximately $15million to that total.
As far as New Zealand's untapped 'blue economy' is concerned one asks the question; can seaweed product respond to challenges of production, processing and marketing to an ever demanding global economy at the same time remaining sustainable?
Well it appears one company at least is responding very pragmatically and patiently. Auckland based, Pacific Harvest has been gathering a range of edible seaweed products almost weekly for the last 20years.
Its new Wakame flake product joins a growing collection of seaweed lines including seaweed seasoning and salt products.
New Zealand has a coastline of approximately 15,134 kilometres (9,404 miles). This includes both the mainland and the many offshore islands that are part of the country. New Zealand's coastline is known for its rugged beauty, with a mix of sandy beaches, rocky cliffs, and picturesque bays and inlets. The coastline is rich in edible seaweed products.
Underwater seaweed off the coast of New Zealand.
Pacific Harvest's Wakame flakes enter the market at just the right time as overseas developers of plant-based fish products expand their usage of umami flavourings.*
"Our NEW Wakame flakes are harvested by hand from the pristine waters of New Zealand’s South Island, air dried to preserve nutrients, then milled into small pieces. They have a subtle flavour which adds depth to whatever flavours you pair them with. Wakame is a popular edible seaweed, commonly added to delicious, hearty miso soups and are an essential everyday ingredient for a boost of minerals including an excellent source of iodine", says Pacific Harvest's website.
Miso Soup With Wakame Seaweed
Pacific Harvest gauges its carbon sustainability footprint on a regular basis. Because ALL their products are wild harvested they also test every batch produced for contaminants.
"We test all our seaweed for contaminants in external labs, before packing the flakes in our food grade facility in Auckland. We recently removed the zip lock from our refill bags to reduce the amount of overall plastic in the refill bag", says Pacific Harvest.
Pacific Harvest is a small team of dedicated management and technical staff.
"With the ninth longest coastline in the world, the ocean is central to life here in New Zealand. The seaweeds harvested from our shimmering unspoilt oceans are nutritious and pure. We proudly carry the New Zealand Fernmark on our New Zealand harvested seaweeds", says the Pacific Harvest team.
*The market for umami flavourings is expected to grow significantly in the coming years. This is due to the increasing popularity of umami as a savoury taste, as well as the growing demand for healthy and natural food ingredients for the expanding plant-based protein products market.
Learn more about Umami: https://umamimeats.com UmamiMeats – Sustainable Seafood. Cultivated, not caught.
Umami Meats is cultivating a sustainable seafood future. Our cultured fish is nutritionally equivalent to traditional seafood, and provides a delicious culinary experience while protecting our oceans.
The flavouring product is designed for plant-based fish, shrimp and other seafood alternatives, enabling “true seafood” taste and umami flavour to elevate the consumer experience. BYAS has announced the development of a new product, a seafood flavouring that can be