The project will establish cultivation of seaweed along Ghana’s 540 km of coastline and establishing relevant technology, develop local know-how and new business opportunities for seaweed cultivation (i.e. farming) and processing of seaweed products in Ghana. The project will develop selective enzymatic technologies to extract valuable hydrocolloids, carrageenan, alginate, and fucoidan from seaweed. The technology is fit for local, smallscale enterprise and green growth in Ghana. The seaweed processing residues will be exploited for production of bioenergy, including bioelectricity by microbial fuel cells (resting on experiences developed in an ongoing DFC project among the partners). Sustainability aspects will be carefully considered to establish green processes. The project focus is:
1. Development of offshore seaweed farming in Ghana;
2. Development of local enzyme production and bio-catalytic extraction; technologies for sustainable extraction of target hydrocolloids;
3. Sustainability assessment;
4. Local training and entrepreneurship development for seaweed farming and seaweed processing business opportunities in Ghana.
Midterm report 2017:
Several red and brown types of Ghanaian seaweeds have been found to hold highly functional and hence valuable hydrocolloids with reological properties on par or better than the equivalent commercial carrageenan and alginate. Ghanaian Hypnea musciformis seaweeds is a source of commercial carrageenan. Hydropuntia seaweed contains agar. Ghanaian Sargassum sp. contain alginate, and Padina seaweed from Ghana have high-gelling alginates.
Cultivation of seaweeds in Ghana is preferable to collection to control quality.
Different types of green seaweeds respond differently to enzymatic conversion due their structure.
Study completed on: Environmental Location Assessment for Seaweed Cultivation in Ghana published).
Abundacy of seaweeds in Ghana; The major dry season showed the highest growth of seaweeds mostly all locations examined. this is likely due to high concentrations of nutrients during the dry season. Tema New Town and Old Ningo recorded the highest species richness and diversity of seaweeds. Work on biodiversity is ongoing.
The website is a project website at DTU Bioengineering.