TN to become hub for seaweed industry

Chennai, Sep 28 (IANS): Tamil Nadu will become a seaweed industry hub with its proposed seaweed park, and the state government is on a mission mode to uplift the seaweed farming, said a senior state government official.

Inaugurating the Seaweed India-2022 Conference here, A. Karthik, Principal Secretary Animal Husbandry, Dairying, Fisheries and Fishermen Welfare Department, said the state is poised for growth as a modern seaweed hub.

"We are creating a unique opportunity for the investors and entrepreneurs to make Tamil Nadu a one-stop destination for the seaweed sector," he said.

The two-day conference is organised by Smart Agripost jointly with Bay of Bengal Programme (BOBP) and Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute at National Centre for Sustainable Coastal Management (NCSCM) Auditorium.

"The government is on a mission mode to uplift the seaweed farming in the state with an integrated, tech-savvy and end-to-end approach catering to the need of fishers, industries and new entrepreneurs of the seaweed industry," he said.

Karthik said despite various efforts, the potential of seaweed farming at home remains unrealised.

"The current annual demand of seaweed in Tamil Nadu for industrial use is about 115 thousand tonnes while the current production is staggering around 15 thousand tonnes, which is 13 per cent of the installed processing capacity", Karthik added.

"Moreover, seaweed farming can also be used for carbon trading. The full potential of the seaweed is yet to be realised and we are on a rewarding journey," he said.

According to him, the proposed multi-purpose seaweed park would facilitate technology adoption for productivity enhancement, environmental improvement and the creation of sustainable livelihood opportunities to coastal people.

"The park with an investment of Rs 1,277.2 million will also offer a well-organised production system, strengthen infrastructure and competent institutions for optimum utilisation of coastal resources," he added.

The state government has already identified suitable lands for the proposed project in Ramanathapuram and Pudukottai districts, Karthik said.

Dr J.K Jena, Deputy Director General of Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) highlighted the research advancements made by the ICAR towards popularising seaweed farming in India.

Dr K S Palanisamy, Tamil Nadu Fisheries Commissioner highlighted the preparedness of various initiatives of the Fisheries Department, including the seaweed park.



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