This week I had a lunch of sushi rolled in nori which are thin sheets of seaweed. This got me thinking about the many uses for seaweed not only for sushi rolls but in salads and kelp cubes for smoothies.

I remember walking along the beach in Oceanside, CA. We would always see large heaps of brown seaweed washed ashore. As kids, we liked to poke through it.

It is only recently that I’ve begun thinking about this sea crop as a valuable underwater vegetable.

Many Uses for Seaweed

I watched a video about the many uses of kelp, and was quite surprised.

Toothpaste, ice cream, almond milk, and baby food all contain seaweed. Pharmaceuticals make medicine from it. Even bioplastics use it to make other products.

The below photograph shows a serving of organic roasted seaweed with sea salt. The serving size was one package, (5g). This serving has zero cholesterol, zero sugar, and only 30 calories.

Organic Roasted Seaweed

Climate Changes & and the Need for Solutions

With climate changes, fishermen face the reality of a changing world.

When costal waters warm up, underwater life shifts to cooler waters. So, this makes it harder for a fisherman to make money solely by fishing.

However, fishermen can also grow this underwater crop to make extra money.

Growing Sea Vegetables and Seaweed

According to a video made by CNBC’s video, growing kelp requires a boat, twenty acres of ocean, and a minimum $20,000 investment.

Small kelp seeds are planted on 1,000 foot long ropes which are suspended in the open ocean. The area is then marked with buoys. The fisherman sometimes grows muscles and clams alongside the kelp. When the plants mature, they are harvested by the fisherman. The kelp is then processed.

These plants are important because they take in carbon from the ocean’s waters. Removal of carbon makes the oceans healthier for fishes and other seas creatures.

Ending Comments

Seaweed is another food source.

However, it is also imperative that we learn to respect and harvest seaweed responsibly.

As consumers, careful consumption is the key word so we don’t overuse the ocean’s natural sources of kelp or over fish the waters.

This is something to think about when you eat your next piece of sushi.

Resource Sites: CNBC, YouTube, “Why the Demand for Seaweed is about to Boom” and The Washington Post, Food Section, August 10, 2022, “Staying Afloat with the Help of Kelp”

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