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Project Report 2023

In 2023, KOASTAL, with co-financing from Jordbruksverket, embarked on a series of innovative activities aimed at advancing seaweed cultivation. This report highlights the significant achievements and progress made throughout the year, focusing on site selection, cultivation rig optimization, harvesting and processing logistics, data recording, and farmer onboarding.

WP 1: Site Selection Pilot and Full-Scale Permitting
Our primary objective was to identify suitable locations for seaweed cultivation, considering both anthropological and physical-biological perspectives. In 2023, we successfully secured six out of seven pilot permits. Although resource constraints limited the establishment to five farms, each site underwent an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) process to scale-up operations in the following year. The assessment revealed that three sites required comprehensive EIAs due to their significant impact, while the remaining three were deemed to have non-significant impacts and submitted their EIAs in early 2024.

WP 2: Optimizing the Design of Seaweed Cultivation Rigs
The project explored various rig designs to determine the most effective setup for seaweed cultivation. In 2023, we tested the spreader bar setup on four farms, which proved to be straightforward to install and manage. Farmers received education and on-site assistance for seeding and could independently handle maintenance with online support. Key improvements were identified to enhance crop survival rates.

WP 3: Designing, Testing, and Evaluating Harvesting and Processing Logistics
Efficient harvesting and processing logistics are critical for seaweed farming success. In collaboration with Smögen Nätt, we developed 12 different mesh bag designs for testing in early 2024. These bags are intended to facilitate convenient harvesting and storage on smaller vessels. Additionally, four stabilization techniques were prepared for trials to ensure cost-effective and industry-agnostic processing of seaweed products.

WP 4: Data Recording, Analysis, and Reporting Software
We introduced an MVP version of the Track’n’Trace app, which enables farmers to monitor crop growth and report issues. This app will be utilized during the upcoming harvest to track the entire supply chain, ensuring transparency and quality control from harvest to delivery.

WP 5: Farmer Onboarding, Education, and Assistance
Recognizing the need for comprehensive farmer support, we developed detailed educational materials and conducted several individual workshops. These efforts were complemented by the creation of a farmer manual, available in both English and Swedish, tailored to local conditions. The first group workshop is scheduled for early April 2024 to finalize harvest preparations.

2023 was a year of significant progress for KOASTAL in advancing seaweed cultivation. The successful implementation of pilot permits, optimization of cultivation rigs, and the development of efficient harvesting and processing logistics have laid a strong foundation for the project's continued success in 2024.

About the project

This project, co-financed by Jordbruksverket, commenced in September 2023 and will continue until September 2025. It aims to test an innovative business model in real conditions for deploying small-scale sea-based seaweed farms. KOASTAL provides customers, such as fishers, with a turnkey farm package and a buy-back guarantee for their crops, fostering the growth of local small-scale seaweed farming.

About Jordbruksverket

The Swedish Board of Agriculture (Jordbruksverket) plays a vital role in supporting rural development and sustainable agricultural practices in Sweden. It provides information and regulations related to animals, plants, food, and beverages, focusing on trade and health standards. The agency also oversees the implementation of the Common Agricultural Policy and the Maritime, Fisheries, and Aquaculture Programme, offering support for rural development measures and agri-environmental payments. Jordbruksverket is a key co-financier of projects that promote innovative agricultural solutions, such as the development and customer piloting of sustainable seaweed cultivation models.


KOASTAL is developing the most resource-efficient production system of seaweed biomass using a franchise model building on the current resources of the fishing industry. We help fishers set up, operate and scale their farms, and aggregate and certify their production to result in the best product-market fit for large-scale buyers.

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