NCMA Algae Tips
Click here for more information about Liqofluxphenometrics515R1
Visit!Commercial Algae Professionals spacer

Scale Up

Solarvest producing organic-certified omega-3 algal oil

June 23, 2014

Linda Grant, a Solarvest laboratory technician, and Sean LeBlanc, a Solarvest development technician, test algae growth and sterility inside a company clean room at its Summerville, P.E.I. facility.

Linda Grant, a Solarvest laboratory technician, and Sean LeBlanc, a Solarvest development technician, test algae growth and sterility inside a company clean room at its Summerville, P.E.I. facility.

The Guardian reports that Prince Edward Island (P.E.I.), Canada-based Solarvest has created an inventive system utilizing a specific algal strain to grow and produce EPA DHA omega-3 oil under controlled conditions. According to Solarvest chief operating officer Garth Greenham, the result is the first organic-certified, chemical-free omega-3 fatty acids in the world, as well as breakthrough technology to generate hydrogen.

With a proprietary technology platform utilizing a metabolic “switch” — developed by chief scientific officer Dr. Raymond Surzycki — Solarvest can alternately prompt algae to discharge hydrogen gas, as well as oxygen, while consuming carbon dioxide.

Acquired in 2013, Solarvest’s 30,000-square-foot building houses production and R&D operations, with laboratories and administrative offices for the staff of 10.

“P.E.I. offered the most support and was helpful in the tough early years,” says Michael McDougall, team engineering lead, a UPEI and Dalhousie University graduate who heads up the company’s operation on the island.

“We’ve developed a stable talented workforce – many living locally in Alberry Plains, Cardigan and Brudenell – and engage with local contractors and suppliers. We hire Holland College and UPEI graduates, and collaborate with both institutions.”

Many levels of government are supporting Solarvest’s promising R&D. This includes three Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada grants for university research collaboration, plus a combined total of $2.8 million in fully-repayable ACOA and Atlantic Innovation Fund grants to advance the scale-up of the operation.

“We’re a green company,” says Greenham. “We’re looking for B-Corp certification, meeting the highest standards of global social and environmental performance.”

The company, a subsidiary of Solarvest Bio-Energy Inc., headquartered in Vancouver, will expand production in Summerville as it begins delivery of algae-based omega-3 products to customers. For Greenham, that’s an important next step in the emerging global algal industry.

More Like This…

HOME A.I.M. Archives

Copyright ©2010-2015 All rights reserved. Permission granted to reprint this article in its entirety. Must include copyright statement and live hyperlinks. Contact A.I.M. accepts unsolicited manuscripts for consideration, and takes no responsibility for the validity of claims made in submitted editorial.

From The A.I.M. Archives

— Refresh Page for More Choices
Flint Michigan’s water supply was switched from Lake Huron to the Flint River in 2014. The Flint is so notoriously dirty that some locals call it the Filth River. The cha...
John Wiegand writes for that, as the craft brewing industry matures, many West Michigan producers have started seeking out technology that provides sustainable ...
The Green Friendship Bridge series examines a simple question: “What makes better sense, extending the border wall with Mexico 1,300 miles or taking 13 miles of fence inv...
Prior posts highlight the value proposition for building a Green Friendship Bridge of algae microfarms in lieu of 1%, (13 miles) of Donald Trump’s proposed border wall wi...
CBS Miami reports that protesters are demanding answers and action over the toxic mess in Florida — a poisonous algae bloom plaguing four counties now under a state of em...
Judy Siegel-Itzkovich writes in the Jerusalem Post that Dr. Iftach Yacoby and his research team at Tel Aviv University, in Israel, have genetically altered microalgae to ...