The GCRF GlobalSeaweedSTAR will address three key ‘Development Challenges’;

Challenge #1: Secure and resilient food systems supported by sustainable aquaculture – develop innovative new detection methods for key yield-limiting seaweed diseases and pests on cultivation sites and in the wider environment and legislation/ biosecurity measures to prevent their introduction and spread: We will focus on identification of emergent diseases and pests (WP1) and the development of early warning, risk-based detection protocols (WP2) and robust national and international policies to ensure the security and resilience of this industry in developing countries (WP4).

Challenge #2: Resilience and action on short term environmental shock and long term environmental change – mitigate the sensitivity of seaweeds to fluctuating environmental conditions and climate change: We will empower developing countries to develop and test new commercial strains for increased resistance to the key yield-limiting diseases and pests under conditions of environmental change (WP3) and embed the knowledge gained into practical farm management protocols to ensure maximum yield at the farm sites (WP2).

Challenge #3: Sustainable livelihoods supported by strong foundations, infrastructure and gender equality for sustainable economic growth and innovation – understand the socio-, political and institutional landscapes in our developing country partners regarding biosecurity (WP2), gender equality and risk management: We will work closely with local communities and national governments to develop a robust approach to policy development to promote sustainable economic growth of the seaweed industry in these countries (WP4). Furthermore, we will not only test our protocols, detection techniques and policies in Tanzania, the Philippines and Malaysia, but in other developing countries through collaborative research programmes, supported by the GCRF GlobalSeaweedSTAR Fund.