Bhubaneswar: The Union Government has proposed to set up a model demonstration farm in Chilika lake for cultivation of seaweeds. Economically important seaweeds have lot of commercial value and the farm will be over one hectare.
Gracilariaverrucosa and Ulva linza or Ulva prolifera will be cultivated in the lagoon, officials sources said. The Technology Information, Forecasting and Assessment Council (TIFAC) of India has taken up initiative for setting up seaweed mission. Apart from Odisha, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Gujarat have also been listed for seaweed cultivation.
By an estimate, if cultivation is done in 10 million hectares or 5% of EEZ area of India, it can provide employment to 50 million people; set up new seaweed industry and contribute to national GDP. Looking at immense latent and untapped potential of seaweeds in India, TIFAC had brought out a report on Seaweeds in 2018, which besides highlighting huge potential also drew out a road map for implementations of recommendations.