Dutch Pilot News | Successful Seaweed Harvest and Machine testing


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Another successful seaweed harvest in the North Sea!

Last June, the Seaweed Company, North Sea Farmers, CIV Den Oever and Boeg b.v. constructiewerken completed an important milestone in the project when the fully grown seaweed nets were lifted from the water and brought to the harbor of Scheveningen. At this occasion, the Cultivator 01 and 02 were tested and validated. The Cultivator is a flexible seaweed growing system with self floating nets fixed between spar buoys that has withstood several heavy storms over the last two years.

The seaweeds were automatically collected from the cultivation lines by harvesting machines that have been especially developed for the farm structure designed within UNITED. This was a successful test for the machine, although the harvest wasn’t optimal due to the nets being retrieved from sea earlier. It was a great joint effort of brains and muscles to make three nets go through! This harvesting activity has been made possible by ‘De Proeftuin op de Noordzee’, and the learnings will be essential for further scaling up.

This project demonstrated that seaweed can indeed be grown in harsh offshore conditions. Seeding, seaweed cultivation and growth on net-substrate, as well as mechanised harvesting. All in offshore conditions similar to the wind farms in the Dutch North Sea. As such, this is an important step towards multi- use solutions in between wind parks, and a milestone for the European seaweed sector.

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Pictures from The Seaweed Company