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Biomass production of Hypnea pseudomusciformis (Rhodophyta) for plant growth biostimulants industry applied to agriculture

Abstract

The world demand for seaweed as a raw material has grown in recent decades for application in several sectors, especially food, pharmaceutical and, more recently, agricultural. These seaweeds constitute a resource of relevant global importance, with market size of US$ 10 billion, whether in dry biomass, phycolloids such as carrageenan and extracts. In agriculture, these extracts are applied as plant growth biostimulants. agribusiness represents a highly dynamic sector for applied innovation aimed at guaranteeing food production capacity. Brazil is the largest consumer market for agricultural inputs, with an annual turnover of US $ 45 billion (2019) and with annual growth rates of 6%. Currently, in this quest to increase agricultural production efficiency, seaweed biostimulant extracts stand out worldwide as an innovative input. Products available nationally, that contain algae in their composition, or use imported harvested raw material, or exotic algae that were introduced on the Brazilian coast. Such raw materials are subject to natural climatic changes that affect both the availability of biomass, as well as the chemical composition and therefore affecting the quality and price of the final product. These limitations are due to the absence of matrix banks, difficulties in the production process of quality seedlings and viable production of algae biomass. In this context, the development of a Brazilian product is an important market opportunity. Therefore, it is necessary to make the commercial production of macroalga viable. This project proposes two work fronts to solve technological challenges that: 1- provide more viable processes for domestication, matrix maintenance and seedling production by vegetative propagation and 2 - biomass production of Hypnea pseudomusciformis, a cultivable native red seaweed (Rhodophyta), available be long Brazilian coast by land-based system. Processes that reduce the costs and time of scientific micropropagation protocols will be evaluated. The conditions to be researched include tank systems, evaluating planting techniques and system management. With the viability of the production system, it will be possible to meet the demand for raw materials for product development with biofertilizer companies. (AU)

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