Growing Commercial Sugar Kelp in Nantucket Sound: Idea to Reality
Friday, April 26th, 4:30pm, Hillside Center on the PBCB Campus
Carl Douglass, Richard Curtiss, Jamie Bassett
Co-Owners & Co-Founders, Chatham Kelp, LLC
Farming the sea has come to Cape Cod! Come taste some of our newest fresh local produce! Learn about growing methods and the many benefits and uses of Sugar Kelp (Saccharina latissimi). The kelp, a member of the brown algae family, grows in the cooler waters of the North Atlantic Ocean, Pacific Ocean, and the Barents Sea. The rapidly-growing plant, predominantly a winter crop, forms a narrow blade that can grow up to 15 feet long and 8 inches wide.
Kelp farming can help shellfish growers and fishing families diversify, while providing the public with a new, sustainable, and local seafood product. Sugar Kelp is eaten in casseroles and Asian dishes, and alginate, a byproduct, is used as a stabilizer or thickener in many common foods. The plant is rich in iodine, protein, calcium, and vitamin C.
For more information in advance of this event please visit: www.facebook.com/chathamkelp. Jamie, Carl and Richard are all Chatham fisherman. The three fellows developed the idea to start a kelp farm a few years ago as they were frustrated by increased fishing regulations, substantially depleted ocean stocks, and the recognized a win-win opportunity in kelp farming (winter revenue stream, natural nitrogen removal method, healthy food production). The new farm, set out in Nantucket Sound, is in it’s first season of operation. Jamie Bassett has also branched out and offers presentations on the culinary uses of invasive green crabs, a major pest-species in the shellfishing community. All three can be found on stormy days discussing business plans at the Chatham Squire.
Go sailing, live simply, dream extravagantly.
Roz and Bill Coleman, frugal visionaries with an eye for preservation, taught their children boat maintenance, home renovation and restoration skills, long before DIY became a thing. Now, with their daughter Natalie, they lead a group in charge of maintaining the waterfront cottages at PBCB. Square Top and South Cottage provide the opportunity for members to come and enjoy the bay with family and friends. In their free time, this multi-generational DIY family spends the majority of their summers sailing on Pleasant Bay. The cottages are known for their laid-back charm, stunning views of Pleasant Bay, and capacity to house large families. Members who have participated in this unique program continue to sing the praises of their experience “on the Bay,” often referring to it as “magical.”
This has been a magical week – reminiscent of my childhood summers in Chatham – playing in the water, jigsaw puzzle on the table, lots of quality family time. The view is spectacular and has filled each of us with a tremendous sense of gratitude for this special experience. One of the greatest aspects of staying here is watching Pleasant Bay Community Boating in action. Each morning children and their instructors march past our cottage on their way to set sail on Pleasant Bay. For some it may be a first, others are more seasoned. Yesterday, folks from Cape Abilities were here for their sailing instruction. This wonderful organization is not only providing the gift of education and time spent on the water, but also continuing the rich tradition of sailing on Pleasant Bay.
For details on Square Top, click here.
For details on South Cottage, click here.
Last fall, members responded to our brief survey designed to assess our programs, and plan for the future. We wanted to know more about what programs you are enjoying and what kinds of programs you’d like to see in the future.