The United Nations says that over 800 million people (more than 10% of the world’s population) are routinely undernourished. So how can we not only fill those bellies but provide the protein and nutrients to keep people healthy.
An article in EcoWatch suggests marine microalgae may provide a sustainable solution to global hunger. (photo – India TV News)
Our Insatiable Appetite!
To produce the diet that our Western Civilization is habituated to consumes vast amounts of land, water and energy and contributes to pollution and global warming. Forests worldwide are cut to make way for pastures for livestock production. Agricultural fertilizers used to grow animal feed floods into streams and eventually the ocean, creating dead zones around the world. Fish, a key source of protein for millions around the world, often contain toxic levels of chemicals that when consumed end up in our bodies.
Here’s a Delicious New Idea
If instead of continuing to consume more of our all-ready diminished fish stocks, why not go directly to what fish eat and consume marine microalgae. Microalgae are tiny organisms that are the source of the omega-3 fatty acids and amino acids, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that we normally get from fish. In freshwater such as the Great Lakes, microalgae forms the base of the aquatic ecosystems.
Today, only a few species of marine microalgae are commercially harvested, usually as aquafeed for farmed fish, however, many species have the potential to become a future source for food and animal feed. And microalgae crops have a much smaller environmental footprint requiring less land and water than beef, potatoes, wheat and soy. (graph – CC BY-ND industrial biotechnology)
Mainstream Marketplace Algae-Burgers?
You may already be consuming marine microalgae as a diet supplement and source of omega-3’s. Algae-based teas and flours are also commercially available. Today, marine microalgae products can be used as a protein and fatty acid supplement to raise the nutritional levels of malnourished people globally.
Has the time arrived for microalgae products to enter the mainstream marketplace offering the same nutritional content and taste as beef? Will Algae-burgers be on sale at your local supermarket next week? Blue Ocean will let you know.
by Robert Frerck, Blue Ocean Network
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