Kate Jacques - Why is Algae Interesting to Me?

Categories: Agriculture, Algae
Feb 24

Algae are very efficient at producing nutrients that can be used by higher animals. Like plants, they are at the base of the food chain. Like plants, they capture energy, carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus and other minerals from their environment and create organic molecules like proteins, carbohydrates and fats.

Unlike plants, they do not have to invest energy in building, support structures. Polymers like cellulose, hemi-cellulose and lignin are essential for land plants. It requires a lot of time and energy, CO2 and H2O to make these fibrous polymers. For instance, trees grow very slowly because they must produce an enormous amount of wood to support themselves.

One acre of Chlorella algae can produce as much protein as 21 acres of soybeans; 49 acres of corn; 95 acres of wheat; or 994 acres of barley. With a growing population to feed, algae will become more and more important as a source of protein for animal feeds and human food supplements. In this short video Kate Jacques, Alltech's Director of Nutrition, explains why algae are exciting from a nutritional perspective.

What do you think the role of algae will be in meeting the nutritional needs of a growing population?



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