We’re running out of land to grow enough food to feed a growing population, so a new crop of producers is heading out to sea.
This week, AKUA, a line of “jerky” made from ocean kelp, will hit the market with dreams of becoming the next plant-based snack sensation.
Founder Courtney Boyd Myers is using the product to expose more Americans to this under-the-radar source of sustainable protein.
“Kelp sequesters carbon and nitrogen from the water as land-based plants do from the air, helping to reduce ocean acidification and mitigate climate change,” she explains of her snack’s main ingredient. “Ocean farming is what the agricultural industry refers to as a ‘zero-input crop’ because it requires no fresh water, fertilizer, feed, or arid land to grow.”
Myers sources her sugar kelp from the northeastern coast of the U.S. to provide local ocean farmers, mostly fisherman, with a steady, reliable source of income. It grows in ribbons, latching onto grids of line anchored to the seafloor.