Increasing Echinoderm Value Chains
Sea stars, Sea urchins and Sea cucumbers are abundant marine biomass resources that are under developed. Throughout Europe, these Echinoderms are wastefully exploited, disregarded and discarded. Researchers and industry partners in the InEVal project will advance high quality Bioeconomic products and services from echinoderm biomass. InEVal addresses societal demand for new solutions to current challenges for human food, aqua feeds and ecosystem services by:
- Up-valuing bycatch sea stars from Irish and German inshore shellfish fisheries to highly processed supplements for Salmon, shrimp and Seabass diets using milling, washing and enzymatic fermentation.
- Improving low-value sea urchins from heavily impacted sea urchin barrens to high quality food for humans for high value niche markets in novel land-based enhancement systems under optimal holding conditions.
- Seeding and harvesting sea cucumber for site remediation at aquaculture sites that are enriched with nutrients. Sea cucumbers perform a valuable and sustainable site remediation service followed by their utilisation as a high value human food resource.
InEVal’s novel products and services serve expanding markets and the industry partners will ensure realistic new value chains are established. Production methodologies will be developed to secure regular supply, as required, to surveyed and confirmed target customers, i.e. to diet formulators at just-in-time standard; to sea urchin consumers outside normal gonadal seasonal bounds; to environmentally aware sea cucumber consumers; and to aquaculture operators aiming to remediate fallowed sites efficiently and sustainably. The InEVal project develops realistic value-added, innovative products and services for the bioeconomy from echinoderm bioresources. Focusing on value and sustainability at every step along the value chain, these resource uses contribute to zero-waste and circular economies