The Latvian project partners conducted the 2nd stakeholder meeting within the GRASS project
In total 18 stakeholder meetings are planned within the duration of the GRASS project divided by 6 countries (Estonia, Latvia, Poland, Sweden, Finland and Germany). The first Latvian meeting and 2nd meeting of the project took place in December 2019.
On December 17, 2019, an event “Seaweeds - Traditions, Experiences and Opportunities” took place in Liepaja, which was the first meeting in Latvia with the project target group and stakeholders to inform about the project GRASS. During the event, the experts gave presentations on various seaweed-related topics - algae ecology and conditions that determine the algae stands in the Baltic Sea, economic importance of algae, collection and management of leached algae and research.
Liepaja and Ventspils municipalities, research institutions, environmental protection institutions, as well as several entrepreneurs were represented at the event. A representative from Algorithms Ltd, who is also an associate partner of the GRASS project, shared her experience in using algae in extracts, composting, related research and product commercialization. O.Bikoven, a researcher at the Latvian State Institute of Wood Chemistry, shared the institute's experience in algae biomass research and demonstrated uses for algae such as biodegradable paper production.
During the event valuable lessons were learned and will be collected and used in further work on the project. The main ones are:
- Algae are a valuable resource in bioeconomy (also mentioned in the Latvian Bioeconomy Strategy) and have a wide range of applications (energy production, soil enrichment, plant growth promotion, animal feed, human food, components in materials production, cosmetology, medicine);
- The highest quality products can be obtained from algae harvested directly from the sea, which is why most of the algae biomass in the world comes from aquaculture;
- In total, 33 species of macroalgae are found along the Latvian coast - green algae, brown algae (the most well-known and also most studied of them - Fucus vesiculosus) and red algae.
- The diversity and diversity of algae in terms of chemical composition and economic value should be taken into account both in scientific research and in the development and commercialization of new products;
In Latvia, seaweed washed out on the sea coast is an underutilized resource and further research and exploration of this resource is needed.
Banner picture copy right Kurzeme Planning Region.