SEAWEED HARVEST A GOOD BUSINESS

Deep Bay harvest may be a sustainable business proposal

Carrageenans are an organic renewable resource, used not only in pharmaceuticals but many natural organic products such as organic yogurt and organic beauty products. All products we want to see more of. This is truly a sustainable business proposal that can exist in harmony with the environment, unlike oil and mineral extraction.

The biological review by Ian Birtwell is not a scientific document and as mentioned in a recent article by reporter Candace Wu, is a literature review and more importantly is, as mentioned, anecdotal. The VIU study will be a scientific document, as Wu reported. I hope we will all agree, that this, is to be our source of information, for this harvest.

As far as I am aware, it is three license holders and they all work together and dry out of one facility, 25 miles away at Parksville. The harvest area is approx five which must represent a very small amount of the seaweed biomass on the huge B.C. coast. The harvest is done by hand, pitch-forking seaweed into baskets, approx. four employees. The baskets are set near the high tide mark and a wide-track machine smaller than a pickup truck slowly makes it way along the beach at the high tide mark retrieving the full baskets. A person can walk faster than this single machine and it leaves almost no trace of having been there. This machine then delivers the baskets to the access point to a trailer pulled by a pickup truck where the seaweed is loaded. Then it is driven to the drying facility mentioned above. All along, the Ministry of Agriculture is recording the volume extracted and observing the extraction process.

This is truly a mom and pop small business model we all admire. I cannot imagine being any less harmful to the environment. Visual observation indicates that the extraction of the seaweed is well under 10 per cent of the total biomass coming onto this  small section of beach throughout the year. The three companies provide about 16 well-paying jobs to our area. This is truly a value-added operation. This is not raw resource extraction and shipped halfway around the world, unprocessed. All in all a wonderful success story by some young green entrepreneurs. Full disclosure: I am the landlord for the drying facility.

Cliff Walker,

Mistaken Island

Just Posted

Island farmers concerned with Agricultural Land Reserve changes

Dozens voice concerns at special meeting in Nanoose Bay

Former TOSH director: ‘I will miss that challenge’

Corinne James looks back fondly on memories made at art centre

Parksville resort fire caused by flammable gas used to extract oil from cannabis

Investigators detail reasons for explosion and blaze that destroyed building

RDN adopts new bylaw to prevent backflow

Board wants to avoid legal liability

Former Parksville Generals player lands head coaching gig in Norway

New position is a dream come true for Henry Acres

VIDEO: Trans Mountain expansion project gets green light, again

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the decision in Ottawa on Tuesday afternoon

MPs hear retired B.C. nurse’s petition to change compensation for fatal medical errors

Teri McGrath wants provinces to implement no-fault system for medical errors

Horgan says he’ll still defend B.C. coast after second Trans Mountain approval

Meanwhile, one B.C. First Nation has announced plans for a legal challenge

VIDEO: Firefighters stop blaze from spreading after BMW crashes at Saratoga Speedway

Victoria-based businessmen were ‘corner training’ on Father’s Day when incident took place

Demonstrators on either side of Trans Mountain debate clash in Vancouver

Crowd heard from member of Indigenous-led coalition that hopes to buy 51% of expansion project

Grieving B.C. mom hopes Facebook message leads to new investigation into son’s Surrey homicide

Criminal Justice Branch didn’t lay charges, concluding no substantial likelihood of murder or manslaughter conviction

Ginger Goodwin’s Cumberland cemetery grave desecrated

Just days before the Miners Memorial weekend, Ginger Goodwin’s grave has been… Continue reading

B.C.’s measles vaccination program gains traction in May

More than 15,000 doses of the MMR vaccine has been administered across the province

UPDATE: Two-year-old involved in Chilliwack pool drowning has died

Toddler was reported to not be breathing as air ambulance called out Thursday afternoon

Most Read