Algae products

Project FunSea


The FunSea project aims to improve the nutritional quality, safety and functional properties of cultivated brown and green algae as food ingredients.  . The consortium consists of four research partners (SINTEF, Lund University, Aalborg University, Fraunhofer IMTE), one public institution (Simrishams Municipality Marine Center) and two industrial partners (Seaweed Solutions, Bettafish) from four countries (Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Germany). The consortium will use marine resources from the Atlantic and the Baltic Sea. Key technologies in the project include biomass cultivation and pre-processing, enzymatic and microbial processing, food technology and environmental analysis. The FunSea project will develop new knowledge, methods and prototypes based on renewable and sustainable marine biomass, contributing to the growth of the blue economy, the development of scientific excellence and the solution of major societal challenges.

In FunSea, Fraunhofer IMTE's Food Technology Division leads the work package, which focuses on the characterization of biomass and the development of new food products.

FunSea is funded by the Sustainable Blue Economy Partnership (part of the EU's Horizon 2020 program) and the BMBF.


Macroalgae as Future Food

Algae popcorn
Almonds coated in algae

In food technology, some ingredients of macroalgae, such as carrageenan, alginate or agar-agar, are already used as thickening and binding agents. Other health-promoting substances such as fucoidans are used in food supplements in particular.

Macroalgae have great potential and we have therefore set ourselves the task of developing products using macroalgae. The raw material is either used directly or further processed, for example by extraction. In this way, the yield can be optimized or certain components can be isolated.

As part of the Fraunhofer Future Food project, a development center for food research was established in northern Germany. The focus was on research into marine resources and the resulting innovations along the value chain. The use of macroalgae was of major importance and sub-projects in this field of research were successfully carried out.

For example, products such as algae pesto and algae popcorn were developed using algae. Furthermore, algae extracts were developed for use in vegan products.