Following the kickoff of the Aquacelerator, EnerGaia, partnering with land, building, and factory owners to utilize excess space for the cultivation of spirulina, has been hard at work facilitating impact in the Indian Ocean region. Today’s blog provides a recap and photo diary of their journey they have undertaken, supporting economic empowerment for local women entrepreneurs and local farmers and fishermen overall to prevent overfishing and bring sustainable algae products into the fold in innovative ways.
Madurai Visit by Saumil Shah, Bonnie Hobbs and Maddie Hobbs of EnerGaia
Antenna Trust, and EnerGaia are providing a way for local women entrepreneurs to earn a steady income by growing spirulina. Saumil, Maddie and Bonnie went to Madurai to install a demo system. The Antenna team has successfully harvested their first kilos of spirulina and plan to expand the number of tanks to 1000 within this year. This farm will employ up to 30 women. 70% of the spirulina harvest will be purchased by EnerGaia while the rest will be distributed amongst rural malnourished children or sold locally by Antenna.
The EnerGaia team is planning a follow-up visit to Madurai in early May to help Antenna to install another 200 spiraling tanks and teach them about our harvesting and processing techniques for fresh spirulina.
Spirulina Farm at Anantara Hotel, Si Kao, Trang Province, Thailand
Facilitated by Donna Kwan (UNDP) and Khun Jear (NGO SAN), Energaia is teaming up with the Anantara Hotel to install 100 spiraling tanks. The system would be used to provide an alternative livelihood for local farmers and fishermen to prevent overfishing which is threatening the food supplies of the dugong.
The products harvested by the farmers could be used by Anantara to create healthy snacks and lunches for children in the local schools. Anantara could also promote spirulina to their hotel guests by adding it to drinks and dishes.