The European Commission, the European Climate, Infrastructure and Environment Executive Agency (CINEA) and a consortium of sustainability consultants and algae organizations are launching a European algae stakeholder platform, called EU4Algae. The purpose of the platform is to accelerate the development of a European algae industry and promote algae for nutrition and other uses among consumers and businesses in the EU.
Despite all their vast applications in the culinary, health, and ecology arenas, the uptake in Europe of algae production and consumption has been slow. Too slow, according to the European Commission, so they are stepping up the game.
Together with CINEA and a consortium (comprised of EurA AG, EABA, Systemiq, Technopolis and s.Pro), the Commission is framing EU4Algae as a three-year project to accelerate the scale-up of a regenerative, resilient, fair and climate friendly algae industry in Europe. The intention is also to bring more novel algae species to the EU market.
The platform will be a unique space for collaboration among European algae stakeholders including algae farmers, producers, sellers, consumers, technology developers as well as business-support organizations, investors, public authorities, academia, researchers and NGOs. It will also act as a single information hub on algae funding calls, projects, business-related information, intelligence and best practices.
The collaboration platform will be online by Summer 2022.
Background: realizing the European Green Deal through algae
In its Farm to Fork strategy, a key component of the European Green Deal, the Commission stated the ambition for algae to “become an important source of alternative protein for a sustainable food system and global food security.”
In last year’s strategic guidelines for sustainable aquaculture, the Commission highlighted the role of seaweed cultivation in climate mitigation (through carbon sequestration) as well as climate adaptation (e.g. nature-based coastal protection).
By the end of 2022, the Commission will release an EU Algae initiative accompanied by an Action plan to promote algae in Europe, and the EU4Algae platform will support their implementation.
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