Seaweed cultivation, as a diversification activity in mariculture, has tremendous potential all along the Indian coast. Seaweeds are rich in vitamins and minerals and are consumed as food in various parts of the world and used for the production of phytochemicals, viz., agar, carrageenan and alginate, which are widely employed as gelling, stabilizing and thickening agents in several industries of food, confectionery, pharmaceutical, dairy, textile, paper, paint, etc.
In India, seaweeds are used as raw materials for the production of agar, alginate and liquid seaweed fertilizer (LSF). There are a few agar industries, algin industries and LSF industries situated at different places in the maritime states of Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Gujarat. The red algae Gelidiella acerosa, Gracilaria edulis, G. crassa, G. foliifera and G. verrucosa are used for agar manufacture and brown algae Sargassum spp., Turbinaria spp. and Cystoseira trinodis for the production of alginates an d liquid seaweed fertilizer. The quantity of seaweeds exploited is inadequate to meet the raw material requirement of Indian seaweed industries.
Seaweeds such as Gracilaria edulis, Hypnea musciformis, Kappaphycus alvarezii, Enteromorpha flexuosa and Acanthophora spicifera can be successfully cultivated in long-line ropes and nets by vegetative propagation method. This activity has a potential to provide income and employment to about 200,000 families.
The National Fisheries Development Board (NFDB) assists the following components to support Seaweed cultivation:
Following criteria will be applied for selection of agencies for conduct of training/demonstration programmes:
The following criteria shall be applicable for selection of farmers/entrepreneurs (preferably fisher women) to receive training:
In view of specialized nature of the processing of seaweeds for specific high value produce like carragenan, specific proposals will be considered, with the NFDB assistance in the form of equity to the tune of 20% of the investment costs.
|Sl. No.||Name of the Activity/Scheme||Unit Cost||Pattern of assistance|
||40% subsidy on the unit cost to women SHG’s and entrepreneurs|
|B||Training on Seaweed Culture||DA @ Rs.150/day/ trainee; Reimbursement of to and fro travel expenses actual/ max Rs. 500/-; Honorarium to resource person @ Rs. 500/- per day and TA actual/max @ Rs. 1000/- per programme; to Implementing agency @ Rs.75/day/trainee||100% grant to Govt. Institutions/ agencies having expertise|
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