Welsh Government - Economy, Science & Transport

Advances Wales Issue 76 - The Digital Revolution

A selection of publications from the Welsh Government Department of Economy, Science and Transport.

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For more information please circle 7603 on the reader reply card R Algae food of the future esearchers at Swansea University, in South Wales, have revealed how traits in different micro-algal species can be adjusted according to cultivation condition The research shows how algae could one day contribute to modern agriculture crop production and become a mainstream source of food and feed. Algae are a good source of protein, fats and carbohydrates as well as being rich in micronutrients such as vitamins and minerals. Some species are particularly rich in omega-3 oils giving the option of bypassing the need to consume the oily fish. Algae have the advantage compared to other agricultural crops in having rapid growth rates and in that they can be cultivated year round. This research means that Swansea scientists are able to naturally adjust the metabolism of algal cells to optimise growth and the biochemical composition of the cells and hence their nutritional profile. This has been achieved by understanding and carefully controlling the light the algal cells are exposed to as well as the nutrients in the media that the algal cells grow in throughout their life cycle. Ultimately, understanding the metabolism within the Profile Product Controlled algal cultivation and optimisation of products. Applications Food, feed and healthcare Contact Dr Carole Llewellyn Associate Professor in Applied Aquatic Bioscience Department of Biosciences Wallace Building Swansea University Singleton Park Swansea SA2 8PP. UK T: +44 (0)1792 60616 E: c.a.llewellyn@swansea.ac.uk W: www.enalgae.eu Profile New developments in algal cultivation and optimisation cells will lead to the production of a food source containing the right combination of macro- and micro-nutrients in sufficient quantities for industry take-up. It has taken thousands of years for humans to cultivate the agricultural crops grains, fruits, and vegetables with the desired traits that we take for granted. 'Algal farming' is in its early stages but this research shows that it has the potential to make a significant contribution to food and feed supplies for future generations. The research at Swansea, supported by Welsh Government, has been enabled by the EU collaborative INTERREG EnAlgae project. The EnAlgae collaboration led by Swansea University has taken experimental results from the 19 project partners and used these for the development of a decision support tool. advances advances wales ENERGY advances advances advances wales FOOD 14 "The Decision Support Tool developed in EnAlgae enables interested parties to predict best types of algae and biomass production for a given location within the EU and is important in helping us take the new Algal Industry forward." Dr Carole Llewellyn Associate Professor in Applied Aquatic Biosciences Swansea University

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