Seawater contains all the essential minerals for sustaining our lives, in the same ratios as the human blood stream. Seaplants absorb nutrients from the seawater directly through their leaf‐like fronds. In contrast, land plants can only feed from the limited minerals present around their roots.
Kelps are among the most useful species of seaweeds. The most valuable kelps grow in cold, mineral‐rich waters and grow more slowly. These kelps collect minerals, vitamins, enzymes, amino acids, and other beneficial bioactive properties. Some species, for instance, store flavor‐enhancing compounds, while others are notable for their polysaccharides, such as beta glucans.
Choosing the Best Kelps
Producing effective products from kelp requires careful selection, management, harvesting, drying, and handling. First, it’s important to harvest from clean waters, so the plants are bio‐accumulating clean nutrients. Look for a robust eco‐system, a strong indicator of water quality.
Likewise, the geographic area and tidal patterns greatly affect nutrient levels. Thorvin harvests its leading products in Northwest Iceland near the Arctic Circle because the waters are richly mineralized by glacial milch rivers and by the upsurge of Arctic and Gulf currents.
Also consider management. The world’s kelp beds are renewable only so far as we manage this resource with an eye toward the future. Different species grow at different rates, so it’s important to rotate harvests and allow ample time for new growth. The Thorvin harvest site meets organic production standards as a wild crop harvest, which requires sustainable harvesting practices – as verified by independent auditing.
Interestingly, harvest time also influences nutrient make‐up – i.e., how much of different nutrients have bioaccumulated in the plant.
Handling the Kelp Harvest
Once harvested, it’s all about preserving the nutrient value and making it bioavailable. Thorvin has developed an exclusive method for handling and drying fresh harvests, so nutrients don’t leach out of the freshly cut kelp. The fresh harvests are dried immediately at controlled temperatures, using geothermal energy. The drying process not only protects biological values, it also prevents oxidation. Independent testing verifies Thorvin’s exceptional nutrient make up.
Choose your kelp carefully based on the attributes and benefits that matter most given your application.