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SEAWEED
About Seaweed

The Harverst, Drying and Storage

Bull kelp (Nereocystis leutkeana)

Wakame (Winged Kelp or Alaria marginata)

About Seaweed

Seaweed has a long history as a food and medicine. Many cultures have been traditionally using seaweed in their diet. Seaweed is found in every saltwater ocean and is extremely hardy plant that never develops diseases. It is the most nutritionally concentrated plant source available. Seaweeds contain every mineral essential to sustaining human life, often in the same ratio as human blood.

Seaweed divided in three groups: brown, red and green. Brown seaweed can look different from one another, yet they are similar in its nutrient content and properties. The same applies to the reds and greens. Some species are tough enough to tolerate periodic drying out. These are found in the intertidal zone. The vast majority need to be continually submerged in water. These plants live below the low tide mark or in tidal pools.
While there are 15,000 varieties of edible seaweed, twelve of them are the most common and beneficial kinds:
Brown seaweed: arame, bladderwrack, bull kelp, giant kelp, hijiki, kombu, sea palm, wakame.
Red seaweed: dulse, irish moss, and nori.
Greed seaweed: sea lettuce

The most common seaweed is kelp and wrack species. The largest kelp varieties are found in the cold waters of Pacific Northwest in Canada. Kelp is the highest source of iodine and fucoidan compound with its anti-inflammatory properties. Red seaweed is known for their natural phycolloid gels, agar, and carrageenan.

Seaweed from the Kelp Family is well known for its ability to remove heavy metals, radioactive elements (including radioactive strontium90), and free radicals. Kelp is also one of the important sources of protection from the environmental pollution, X-rays, and many potentially hazardous chemicals that we are surrounded by and that made their way into our food causing cancer and are toxic to the brain and nervous system.

Kelp has become a widely used term referring to any large seaweed in the brown seaweed division with flattened frond. However, kelp blade shapes vary greatly, ranging from simple to winged to multibranched, with or without midribs.

The Harvest and Storage

Our seaweed is sustainably harvested from a clear, cold water of remote areas from Pacific Northwest. The harvest begins in May and lasts until September. The harvesters carefully gather seaweed from pristine kelp forests at their pick of nutrition. Only nutritional fronds that absorb surrounding ocean water and sunlight are harvested. The harvester will cut a couple of inches above sporophylls (the part of the kelp that reproduces) with stainless steel scissors. Because kelp grows several inches a day, it will be ready for a new cut in one month.

The seaweed is harvested in large buckets, rinsed in clean sea water and brought into indoor specialized drying facilities. Then seaweed is hanged to dry on wooden racks. We don’t dry our seaweed in the sun like most seaweed companies do as do not to diminish its nutritional value. It is the best to store dried seaweed in airtight glass jars or sealed plastic at room temperature away from light and moisture.

Bull kelp

Bull kelp (Nereocystis leutkeana) is light brown to dark green brown in color with a long slender brown stipe that can grow to more than fifty feet long. Its large bulb suspends two nodes of numerous thin and flat blades, up to twelve feet long. It has an immernse holdfast that can grow up to sixteen inches across.

Bull Kelp is annual and it grows in subtidal waters, seldom exposed even at lowest tide and is present on rocky shores all along the Pacific West Coast from Alaska to Southern California

Bull Kelp is rich in calcium, magnesium, sodium, iodine, potassium, phosphorus, iron, bulk fiber, and vitamins A, B complex, C, D, E, and K.

Bull Kelp as a herbal remedy: detoxifies body tissues of heavy metal and radioactive agents, treats thyroid disorders, arthritis and digestive problems; purifies blood, aids in weight loss, eases lymphatic swelling; treats herps infections, eases inflammation and neuritis, soothes mucuous membranes, reduces side effects of chemotherapy and radiation.

Bull Kelp as a spa: stimulating, firming, revitalizing, tonic and slimming.

Other uses are as a garden fertilizer, and animal food.


Wakame

Wakame (Winged Kelp or Alaria marginata) is the most graceful sea plant growing in the ocean. Wakame is olive green to brown in color. with a rubbery, long, smooth, single blade, featuring wavy edges, that grows up to six feet in length. It features a small but strong-branched holdfast. Wakame grows in low intertidal and subtidal rocky shore zones and is present on both coast of North America, Alaria marginata on the West Coast and Alaria esculenta on the East Coast;, central Europe, England, Japan, Korea, China, and Iceland.

Wakame is biennial, harvested in early spring to summer, citting a few inches above the holdfast and leaving the lower cluster of leaflets to regrow. Usually only midsection of the blade is used, as the stipe base is very hard and the tip is ragged. Its flavor is delicate and sweet with a clean flavor and aroma.

Wakame as a herbal remedy: softens hardened tissue, inhibits tumors, detoxifies body tissues, eases couph, aids congestion, treats nicotine poisoning, lowers blood pressure, prevents arteriosclerosis, strengthens liver, purifies the blood (used after childbirth).

Wakame as a spa: promotes hair growth, improves skin tone, enhances youthful appearance, treats dry skin, fights free radicals, nourishing, firming, tonic to the skin.
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