Bill Collins, chairperson of Cascadia Seaweed, enjoys a piece of sugar kelp, in 2020. The company has received $12,500 through a joint federal-provincial program to develop a traceability system for its seaweed. (Black Press Media File)

Bill Collins, chairperson of Cascadia Seaweed, enjoys a piece of sugar kelp, in 2020. The company has received $12,500 through a joint federal-provincial program to develop a traceability system for its seaweed. (Black Press Media File)

Sidney-based Cascadia Seaweed receives funding for tracing system

Company with with farms off the coast of Vancouver Island aims to build consumer confidence

A Sidney-based business has received federal support to help build consumer confidence in its growing line of ocean-grown seaweed.

Cascadia Seaweed has received $12,500 through a joint federal-provincial program to develop a traceability system for its business. The system will help Cascadia Seaweed document where the company grew, harvested and processed each variety as the food makes its way to consumers. Public health officials use this documentation to limit the spread of foodborne illness, raise brand reputation and help businesses become more efficient.

Bill Collins, Mike Williamson and Tony Ethier founded the company in 2019. It has established four farms off Vancouver Island (two in Barkley Sound and two in the Discovery Islands) where it grows different types of seaweed, including sugar kelp (Saccharina latissima) and winged kelp (Alaria marginata), while growing a red algae or, dulse (Palmaria mollis), in 10-litre tanks on land.

RELATED: Cascadia hopes to see Sidney host seaweed festival in May 2021

RELATED: Seaweed farming opens world of opportunity for coastal B.C.

Cascadia plans to expand its varieties as part of a larger push to popularize seaweed as a food. A number of products already use seaweed, with other uses under development as the demand for sustainably grown food and other resources increases in the face of population pressures and climate change.

“Our changing world has highlighted the need for food security,” said Bill Collins, chair of Cascadia Seaweed. “Food security not only means a consistent and reliable route to our table, it also means a route with transparency, so consumers can trust what they eat. B.C. traceability helps us achieve that goal.”

RELATED: Sidney company tastes sweet success with sugar kelp

RELATED: Sidney’s Cascadia Seaweed hopes to float to the top of a growing industry

Marie Claude Bibeau, federal minister of agriculture and agri-food, said the announced funding will help Cascadia Seaweed improve its traceability system and its efficiency. “Investments in projects such as this help to strengthen food safety from farm to plate and build consumer confidence in our homegrown products around the world,” she said.

Lana Popham, provincial minister of agriculture, food and fisheries, said local businesses like Cascadia Seaweed are the heart of coastal communities in British Columbia in creating a product respected and enjoyed around the world. “By making traceability systems more accessible to businesses, we’re helping companies create safe and reliable food for consumers while strengthening B.C.’s food system,” she said.


Do you have a story tip? Email: vnc.editorial@blackpress.ca.

Follow us on Twitter and Instagram, and like us on Facebook.

wolfgang.depner@peninsulanewsreview.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Sooke plans to begin construction of the $4.9-million Church Road corridor project this summer. (Kevin Laird - Sooke News Mirror)
Sooke hopes to start Church Road Corridor project this summer

Road upgrade includes a roundabout, sidewalks, bike lanes and boulevards

The site of the proposed rental housing development at 2197 Otter Point Rd. (District of Sooke)
District of Sooke approves development with 77 rental units

New parking lot for John Phillips Memorial Park included in project

Traffic is backed up due to a crash on Highway 1. (Photo courtesy of Google Maps)
Traffic backs up on Highway 1 westbound in View Royal after crash

First responders are reportedly on the scene in View Royal

Police are looking for the driver of this truck after it nearly hit a group of kids in Esquimalt on Thursday. (Photo courtesy of Victoria Police)
Victoria police looking for driver of truck that nearly missed kids before crashing in Esquimalt

The truck’s driver, a man, fled the scene after the truck crashed into a house’s fence

A driver stopped by Saanich police following a road rage incident on April 15 was found to be impaired, in violation of a license restriction and in a damaged vehicle. They received a 90-day driving prohibition and a 30-day vehicle impound. (Saanich Police Traffic Safety Unit/Twitter)
Driver stopped on Pat Bay Highway after road rage reports fails breathalyzer test: police

Several witnesses reported driver to Saanich police, school officer intercepted

A woman wears a protective face covering to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 as she walks past the emergency entrance of Vancouver General Hospital in Vancouver, B.C., Friday, April 9, 2021. COVID-19 cases have been on a steady increase in the province of British Columbia over the past week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Top doctor warns B.C.’s daily cases could reach 3,000 as COVID hospitalizations surge

There are more than 400 people in hospital, with 125 of them in ICU

The father of Aaliyah Rosa planted a tree and laid a plaque in her memory in 2018. (Langley Advance Times files)
Final witness will extend Langley child murder trial into May or June

Lengthy trial began last autumn with COVID and other factors forcing it to take longer than expected

The corner of 96th Avenue and Glover Road in Fort Langley now has traffic signals, and new “touchless” signal activation buttons. (Matthew Claxton/Langley Advance Times)
Busy Fort Langley intersection gets ‘touchless’ crosswalk signals

The new traffic light started operation in April

A crossing guard stops traffic as students wearing face masks to curb the spread of COVID-19 arrive at Ecole Woodward Hill Elementary School, in Surrey, B.C., on Tuesday, February 23, 2021. A number of schools in the Fraser Health region, including Woodward Hill, have reported cases of the B.1.7.7 COVID-19 variant first detected in the U.K. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
COVID-infected students in Lower Mainland schools transmitting to 1 to 2 others: data

Eight to 13 per cent of COVID cases among students in the Lower Mainland were acquired in schools, B.C. says

The District of Sooke will continue to flower with Communities in Bloom. (Pixabay)
Sooke will bud but not bloom in provincial competition

Council scales back participation in Communities in Bloom

An armed officer walks outside Cerwydden Care on Cowichan Lake Road near Skinner Road Wednesday, April 14 around 5:30 p.m. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)
Police standoff at Duncan apartment ends peacefully

Officers surround building as homeowner held in apartment for nearly four hours by adult son

Latest modelling by public health shows cases generated by COVID-19 infections into places where it can spread quickly. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
Industrial sites, pubs, restaurants driving COVID-19 spread in B.C.

Infection risk higher in offices, retail, warehouses, farms

Hwy. 4 was shut down in both directions for 10 hours on March 23 as a rock bluff was blasted as part of Kennedy Hill’s ongoing construction. Commuters can expect five more 10 hour closures on five consecutive Wednesdays beginning April 28. (Photo courtesy of Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure)
Five 10-hour Pacific Rim highway closures planned in the next 6 weeks

Closures needed for rock blasting as part of the Kennedy Hill Safety Improvement project.

Most Read