The 5th stakeholder meeting of the GRASS project was organized in Poland
On 22 September 2020, the first Polish meeting of the GRASS (Growing Algae Sustainably in the Baltic Sea) project stakeholders took place in Gdynia (this was the fifth stakeholder meeting of the whole project already). It was attended by the representatives of administration, science, practitioners, as well as everyone interested in the topic of seaweed from a utility point of view.
Despite the sanitary restrictions related to the coronavirus pandemic, the seminar was attended by 26 participants who heatedly discussed the possibilities and prospects of growing and using macroalgae in the Baltic Sea region.
As part of the introduction to the discussion, the following lectures were presented: the presentation of the project and discussion on the seaweed food market (T. Kulikowski), food law in relation to seaweed (O. Szulecka), non-food applications of seaweed, with particular emphasis on the cosmetics industry (J. Krupska). The preliminary results of the GRASS project regarding the possibility of growing seaweed in the Baltic Sea in the context of the selection of species for future cultivation (M. Jakubowska) were also shown. The presentation on the improvement of the natural environment of the Puck Bay (A. Zgrundo) also aroused great interest, which creates the potential to start growing seaweed in this area. Practical aspects of growing algae, including technical issues, were described by P. Jacheć from J-Tech, which is the operator of an experimental seaweed farm and supplier of equipment for sea farming.
Noteworthy is the very good reception of the project among the stakeholders, and, above all, the positive attitude of the government representatives who see great potential for seaweed aquaculture providing environmental services (nutrient reduction), creating alternative jobs for sea fishermen, and producing products meeting the market demand.
Pictures: National Marine Fisheries Research Institute
Author: Anna Ochman