News

Safe Seaweed by Design is launching a survey on safety hazards in the seaweed sector

Juin 25, 2021 | Survey

Our partners from Safe Seaweed by Design, a project led by the Wageningen University, are launching a study to assess the most important occupational, environmental and food safety hazards in the seaweed sector. We strongly support this initiative that falls fully within our mission and encourage our members to participate by following this link to the survey! More details below and on the project’s website.

What is the purpose of the study?

The ‘Safe Seaweed by Design’ project aims to develop protocols to support the global seaweed sector in identifying, assessing and mitigating risks in order to help the industry grow safely and sustainably. These risks could be related to a) food safety, b) environmental safety or c) occupational safety, health and wellbeing. After identifying the risks, we will design protocols to lessen those risks. We will then use a pilot project to test those protocols and, if necessary, revise them. The outcome will be guidelines, that a) exclude any food risks so that the seaweed is certifiably safe for human consumption b) ensure that the seaweed industry grows sustainably and in balance with the physical environment c) protect the health, safety and wellbeing of employees that cultivate, farm or harvest seaweed.

Why have I been chosen to take part?

Currently, we are in the early stages of the project and are working on determining the most important safety hazards in the seaweed sector. We feel that your knowledge and expertise will help us identify those risks and the extent of the threat they pose to the seaweed industry and those working in it.

Who is conducting and funding the study? 

The project is funded by Lloyd’s Register Foundation, and is conducted by Wageningen University and Research in collaboration with Solent University (UK), Ocean University China and Arctic Seaweed (Norway). We are also collaborating with European, Chinese, and US seaweed producers and the Safe Seaweed Coalition

What am I being asked to do?

The survey contains three sections focused on: a) Food safety, b) Environmental safety and c) Occupational safety. Before each section, you will be asked whether you want to answer the questions in the section or not. If you feel you do not have the required knowledge or experience to answer the questions, you are free to skip the section. For the Food safety and Environmental safety sections we will ask you to assess a list of hazards for the likelihood to severely impact its safety as food or for the environment. With your help we would like to identify the ones that are a high risk to the seaweed industry, due to their frequent or long occurrence, or the severe consequences they may have. Lastly, we will ask you for suggested protocols or standards to lessen those risks. In the Occupational safety section, we will ask you questions about hazards and risks to the health, safety and wellbeing of workers involved in cultivating, harvesting and/or farming seaweed and about procedures intended to prevent harm.

Do I have to take part?

Your participation is entirely voluntary. You can change your mind at any point before submitting your responses.

The survey will be online until the 15th of August. Each section takes around 5-10 minutes to complete.

Fill out the survey

For questions about forwarding or filling in the survey, please contact sophie.koch@wur.nl. For general questions about the project, please contact: sander.vandenburg@wur.nl.