Red algal polysaccharide industry: economics and research status at the turn of the century

  • Donald F. Kapraun
Conference paper
Part of the Developments in Hydrobiology book series (DIHY, volume 137)


Commercial research priorities target production cost reduction and expansion of new applications for established products to increase profitability. Cost effective seaweed production for phycocolloids relies on: (1) species and strain selection, (2) vegetative reproduction, (3) improvements in cultivation, harvesting and drying and storage. Increasingly, present linear technologies based on consumption of raw materials and production of product, and waste, will be replaced by cyclic technologies which maximize utilization of waste as raw material resources. Coproduction and synergistic product development are not only green, but cost effective. Transportation of resources and products is energy expensive, but regional production promises to reduce transportation costs. Marine phycologists have important roles to play in the phycocolloid industry, especially in the development of co-generation and co-production technologies, in the domestication of seaweed cultivars to remove harvest pressure on target species and sensitive ecosystems, and in the development of regional low technology production.

Key words

co-production cyclic production mariculture sustainable development 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • Donald F. Kapraun
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Biological SciencesUniversity of North Carolina-WilmingtonWilmington, NCUSA

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