Danish scientists have succeeded in converting carbon dioxide into protein and Omega 3.
Scientists at the National Institute of Acquatic Resources studied the conversation process at the Algea Reactor, situated at Symbiosis Centre Denmark in Kalundborg.
Here scientists are currently working on a project concentrating on exploring the industrial potential of the algae and the conversation process.
The process involves algae using up CO2 in combination with exposure to light, creating biomass which under the right conditions can be used in high value products.
Some of the algae, for instance, has a high content of Omega 3 fatty assets which can be used for fish fodder, giving fish a better taste when cooked.
Calculations have so far shown that the process can be profitable with production costs being roughly £40 per kilo.
The project uses water purification methods to extract the nutritients, the water being delivered by the nearby company Novozymes, which produces enzymes used in the food and textile industries.
Mette Skouborg Manager at Danish Symbiosis Center said that although the future looked promising for the project it was still in its beginning phases.
“The project primarily concentrates on converting waste water to pigments, protein, and bio fuels in the long run […] The new aspect of our research is that we on top of cleaning waste water can now also extract certain nutrients from the process.”
Camilla Udsen, a food product specialist with the Danish consumers magazine Taenk, said there could be a potential for rethinking where to get nutrients from as the world population will be growing in coming years.
”One of our main concerns is if such products are safe for the consumers,” she said.
Ms Skouborg agreed, stressing that this problem was also on Danish Symbiosis Center’s agenda.