Seaweed can play a vital role in meeting additional demand for food and nutrition for the increasing population of Bangladesh. The coastal area of Bangladesh has vast potentials of seaweed cultivation and it can be cultivated integrally with shrimp cultivation. Speakers opined these while they were speaking at a seminar organized by the Palli Karma-Sahayak Foundation (PKSF) at its auditorium situated at the Agargaon area of Dhaka. They also said that, seaweed can also play vital role in preserving sea diversity and in fighting global warming and sea pollution.
PKSF organized the seminar titled ’Expanding the Horizon of opportunities: Potential of Seaweed’ as a part of celebrating the silver jubilee of the organization. Honorable state minister of the ministry of Public Administration Begum Ismath Ara Sadek was present as the Chief Guest while the secretary of the ministry of Fisheries and Livestock Dr. Shelina Afroza was the special guest. The seminar was presided over by the Managing Director of PKSF Md. Abdul Karim. Md. Shafiuddin of COAST made a special presentation on seaweed cultivation.
In his presentation Md Shafiuddin said, seaweed is full of Iron, Iodine, different mineral salts and carotene and it can provide additional nutrition to elderly and children. Seaweed can reduce risk of heart diseases, high blood pressure and diabetics. COAST Trust is implementing a project titled Value chain development for seaweed cultivators. It has been implemented in Saint Martin, Teknaf and Ukhiya upazila in Cox’s Bazat district with 180 cultivators. Presently 135 cultivators are cultivating seaweeds in scientific methods and COAST trust is marketing it via online, i.e. www.totinionline.com and promoting different food items made of seaweeds.
Md. Abdul Karim said, PKSF is trying to promote some informal sector to generate employment. Seaweed is such an sector. With the support of PKSF COAST Trust is doing some researches and they are promoting its cultivation in coastal areas.
Dr. Shelina Afroza said, we have a huge number of malnutrition children and we have seen that seaweed can build children’s intelligence and complete growth. It can contribute to our GDP as we know a man who grew up with less nutrition can earn 15% less than a general one.
The honorable State Minister said, Seaweed can meet the additional demand of nutrition and food for the additional population. Not only we want to promote massive cultivation of seaweed but also want to export it as the outer world has a good demand of seaweed.