All life originates from sea(weed). Tasty food, renewable resources and important ecosystem services. As such seaweed forms the basis for a promising blue-green economy; local, sustainable, healthy and new opportunity for the European economy.
Seaweed offers extraordinary opportunities – offshore as well as onshore.

Towards a regional seaweed economy

A growing global demand for nutrition and high-quality resources challenges us to explore new methods of food production. seaweed production does not require fresh water, fertilizer nor farmland. As such seaweed is a sustainable resource for healthy nutrition and adds to our food security for the European region. Seaweed converts the greenhouse gas CO2 into biomass and oxygen. This counters oceanic acidification and climate change. Also, the production fields, i.e. seaweed farms create excellent shelter and nurseries for juvenile fish and other organisms such as shellfish and crustaceans. Moreover, seaweed farming will enable multi- use with functions such as wind energy, fishery , shellfish cultivation, etc.

Sustainable seaweed cultivation is feasible in salty marshes, near coastal areas and within offshore wind farms. Seaweed, thus, has the potential for developing a new blue-green economy, with excellent opportunities for Europe as seaweed frontrunner.

Seaweed Platform

The Seaweed Platform is an initiative by the North Sea Farm foundation with the aim of enabling coalitions towards realising the seaweed economy in our region. Businesses, governments and research organisations will develop and promote using our oceans as a sustainable and local source of food, feed and biobased applications. The Seaweed Platform connects partners in agriculture, food, offshore and maritime sector, matches business with public affairs and intensifies the dialogue with society on shaping new production chains.

The platform is made up of partners throughout the whole value chain that jointly stimulate the development of the regional seaweed sector. Annually this is being facilitated by a series of workshops that are open for all members. The Seaweed Platform furthermore has been initiating and managing various focus groups that are aimed at making structural contributions to developing and sharing knowledge and expertise in the regional seaweed sector. Another way of simulating development of the regional seaweed economy. The current focus groups include:

  • Working group Seaweed Atlas;
    Maps the most suitable coastal areas for growing seaweed
  • Working group 1000 Kilo Test;
    Designs and executes test facilities
  • Working group Cultivation Techniques
    Focused on finding the best growing methods
  • Working group Business
    Ceizes opportunities for developing the businesscase ‘seaweed’

Test Farms

Facilities are needed for development and testing of technology. In addition, expertise is required for upscaling sustainable seaweed production at sea. This approach is in line with the Dutch historical development of the agricultural and horticultural sector where the concept of test farms was used to simulate and accelerate innovation for the entire supply chain.

As of April 2016 it is possible for members of the Seaweed Platform to start seaweed test projects on the Test Farm Texel, located on the Dutch North Sea. Test Farm Texel is lowering the threshold for offshore test projects since no permit application procedure is required to start. An area of 100ha (10,000m2) has been made available for testing purposes. When desirable, The North Sea Farm Foundation supports test project initiatives with advice, logistical support, hardware and other services.


Membership of the Seaweed Platform offers the opportunity to jointly develop and shape the regional seaweed economy and a position in this new value chain. Additionally, our members are included as part of external communication activities by the North Sea Farm Foundation.

The membership fees are used to cover (workshop) secretarial expenses. In addition the fees support the foundation in the development and availability of Test Farm sites as well as demonstration projects, where required. In this way we can make significant contributions towards the development of the seaweed economy that is sustainable but also economically interesting for your organisation.

Parties that would like to participate in the Seaweed Platform are requested to formalise their membership by paying a yearly fee relative to the size or type of their organisation:


Organisation size/type Contribution
Company 1 – 5 employees € 250 py
Company 5 – 50 employees €1.000 py
Company 50 – 250 employees €2.500 py
Company >250 employees €5.000 py
Government and NGO’s €1.000 py
Research institutes €2.500 py




About the North Sea Farm Foundation

The North Sea Farm Foundation is a non-profit organisation aimed at realising a sustainable seaweed sector in the region. The board of the foundation consists of Marcel Schuttelaar (Schuttelaar&Partners), Job Schipper (Hortimare) and Ton Menken (Menken van den Assem Fresh Food). Furthermore, the foundation has multiple ambassadors such as Tammo Bult (Director, Imares) and Pier Vellinga (Board member, Waddenacademie).


Eef Brouwers
+31 (0)6 464 22 966

Koen van Swam
+31 (0)6 535 26 089

Stichting Noordzeeboerderij
Zeestraat 84
2518 AD Den Haag