a partnership with the Toco Fisher Folk Association
Marine algae cultivation is among the most environmentally sustainable aquaculture operations in the world, as it does not require inputs or feeds. Trinidad and Tobago has two main alga species used in the food industry: String Moss (Gracilaria spp.) and Fan Moss (Gelidium spp.). The Fan Moss in particular is much more lucrative, as it produces more gel (agar). It is mainly found along the Northern coastline of Trinidad, where it is being overexploited. This project seeks to present a sustainable alternative to seamoss wild-harvest, by proposing an aquaculture system that requires little knowledge and skill, with low start up and low operational costs. Sky Eco-Development Organisation partners with the Toco Fisherfolk Association to design a suitable aquaculture system, develop a strategy for implementation, and establish a sort of bottom-up approach to the management of the cultivated seamoss resources. The project is meant to remove attention from wild-harvest, to focus more on cultivation, which in turn encourages conservation of natural seamoss resources. It would also develop networking relationships with professionals and members of the community, to build capacity. A research component would also seek to enhance the sustainability of the project, as well as provide valuable information that can be used in education and awareness initiatives.