Making the most of microalgae

Thursday, 19 May, 2016
What could be the next new super crop? How about microalgae? An EU-funded project is developing technology to grow and use these single-celled plants. Already used in health-food supplements, the crop has potential to green existing industries and develop new ones.

High in oils, protein and other valuable compounds, such as antioxidants and enzymes, microalgae grow in water in large concentrations using few resources. They have potential for many industries, but so far their main commercial use is in health products such as Spirulina and Chlorella supplements, aquaculture and cosmetics. Only 9 200 tonnes are farmed annually worldwide for food and feed, according to the EU’s Joint Research Centre – a tiny fraction of the potential harvest.

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Multi-product Integrated bioRefinery of Algae: from Carbon dioxide and Light Energy to high-value Specialties
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