Algae have become a multi-billion sector in terms of biotechnology development that is expected to grow rapidly, providing valuable goods and services in multiple applications. In spite of centuries of scientific and commercial interests, the term algae has not taxonomic meaning. In the light of rapidly growing business interests associated with the term algae, a clear, simple definition of algae is not only required, but essential for developing the necessary standards, regulatory and legal issues.
This paper aims to explain ‘what are algae’ and how to answer the most relevant questions to different players interested in the field, including: academia, industry, trade organizations, consumers, business investors, local, national authorities, international organizations and any other interested parties or stakeholders. This position paper represents the position of EABA as the Algae Biomass sector Association from a European perspective and summarizes information from science, technology and business dealing with ‘algae’ biomass, biotechnology and bioproducts.