The UN Global Compact, Lloyd’s Register Foundation and CNRS launch Safe Seaweed Coalition to drive a sustainable industry

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Seaweed plays a significant role in food security, climate change mitigation, supporting biodiversity in marine ecosystems and contributing to job creation and poverty alleviation

New York, NY, March 16, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — UNITED NATIONS, New York, 17 March 2021 — The United Nations Global Compact and Lloyd’s Register Foundation, in partnership with the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CRNS), today launched a global coalition to support a safe, sustainable and scalable seaweed industry to address some of the world’s most pressing global challenges. The Safe Seaweed Coalition is the first initiative to convene stakeholders from across the globe to unlock the full potential of seaweed to contribute to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.

Seaweed has a significant role in food security, climate change mitigation, supporting biodiversity in marine ecosystems and contributing to job creation and poverty alleviation. It also provides a nutritious source of food to humans and animals and some compounds can be used as a substitute for plastics as well as for natural fertilizers or new medical treatments. Seaweed is also a key source of jobs and revenues to coastal communities, particularly for women. Seaweed can also act as a form of carbon sequestration and is increasingly being used as a ‘nature-based solution’ to mitigate climate change and restore abundance in the ocean ecosystem.

The Safe Seaweed Coalition builds on the recommendations outlined in the Seaweed Manifesto, a collaborative report developed by the Lloyd’s Register Foundation and the UN Global Compact in 2020 and will bring together diverse stakeholders from across the seaweed industry to establish the critical infrastructure, regulations and technologies required to drive this new type of cultivation to scale. The Coalition has three core objectives:

  • Consumer safety – Ensuring seaweed products meet commonly agreed upon safety standards for use by consumers

  • Environmental safety – Ensuring seaweed production and processing takes place in harmony with local ecosystems and improves ocean biodiversity

  • Operational safety – Ensuring the welfare of workers is protected at every stage of the seaweed value chain

Vincent Doumeizel, Director of the Food Programme at Lloyd’s Register Foundation and Senior Advisor to the UN Global Compact, commenting on the Coalition’s launch, said: “Seaweed may well be the greatest untapped resource on the planet. This nascent industry is currently highly disconnected and lacking in global safety standards to scale up. Safety is a pre-competitive topic and a great point of convening. By coming together in solidarity, we can leverage seaweed to address some of the most pressing global challenges.”

Sanda Ojiambo, CEO & Executive Director of UN Global Compact, said:

“With the COP26 and UN Food System Summit conferences taking place later this year and a renewed focus on the Decade of Action, there is increasing recognition of the urgent need to find solutions to mitigate climate change and translate the Sustainable Development Goals into reality. The Safe Seaweed Coalition will facilitate multilateral collaboration to accelerate the seaweed industry’s potential to address some of the world’s most pressing problems.”

The Financial Times will host a public digital event to launch the Safe Seaweed Coalition on 17 March. More information on how to register for the launch can be found here.

Those interested in joining the Safe Seaweed Coalition can email secretariat@safeseaweedcoalition.org.

Media Contacts:

Alex Gee

media@unglobalcompact.org

NOTES TO EDITORS

About the United Nations Global Compact

As a special initiative of the UN Secretary-General, the United Nations Global Compact is a call to companies everywhere to align their operations and strategies with Ten Principles in the areas of human rights, labour, environment and anti-corruption. Our ambition is to accelerate

and scale the global collective impact of business by upholding the Ten Principles and delivering the Sustainable Development Goals through accountable companies and ecosystems that enable change. With more than 12,000 companies and 3,000 non-business signatories based in over 160 countries, and 69 Local Networks, the UN Global Compact is the world’s largest corporate sustainability initiative — one Global Compact uniting business for a better world.

For more information, follow @globalcompact on social media and visit our website at unglobalcompact.org.

About Lloyd’s Register Foundation

Lloyd’s Register Foundation is an independent global charity with a unique structure and an important mission: engineering a safer world. We focus on the most pressing global safety challenges such as Food Safety and enhance the safety of life and property at sea, on land, and in the air. We do this by supporting high quality research, accelerating technology to application, and through education and public outreach. Our unique structure comes from the fact that we own a significant trading company, Lloyd’s Register Group. We share the same mission and work together to make the world a safer place.

For more information, please visit www.lrfoundation.org.uk

About the Safe Seaweed Coalition

From smallholder farmers to multinational businesses, specialized research institutes, and

international organizations, the Safe Seaweed Coalition will draw on diverse expertise and experiences from both the public and private sector to drive progress for the seaweed industry to reach its full potential. The coalition will strengthen connections within the seaweed industry to unlock the economic, social and environmental benefits of this unique resource.

To register support for the Seaweed Manifesto please click here and for more information please visit: https://seaweedrevolution.live.ft.com/home

ABOUT CNRS

The CNRS is the largest European public research organization, with about 1,100 services and/or research units throughout the country. As a multidisciplinary institution, it covers all fields of scientific research, driving various programs and actions designed to address society and industry expectations. Three CNRS research departments, located at the Station Biologique de Roscoff (SBR), a renowned research and training center in marine biology and oceanography, jointly operated by the CNRS and Sorbonne University (SU) contribute to seaweed research.

CONTACT: Media Team United Nations Global Compact (212) 907-1301 media@unglobalcompact.org

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