Explore

Could we all be eating algae in the future?

Alice Pritchard

13 September 2017

IKEA’s future-lab, the Space10 department, has been investigating whether algae is a sustainable option when it comes to answering some of our big future problems.

The Algae Dome was debuted at CHART Art Fair in Copenhagen last week. It’s a four metre high, closed loop, food producing dome that creates microalgae.

Scientists and engineers are working on various uses for microalgae, using it as a superfood that could replace soy protein in animal feed (which currently is the cause of much deforestation) or work as a biofuel to replace fossil fuels. It even has the potential to be turned into food for us.

Microalgae is packed with vitamins, minerals and all the essential amino acids, and able to provide us with 50 times more iron than spinach and more than twice as much protein as meat. Superfood favourite spirulina is a form of algae that's incredibly good for you. The Aztecs ate it thousands of years ago and now NASA considers it one of the best foods to send into space or to a future off-world colony.

Plus microalgae has loads more benefits. It can be grown quickly, it doesn't need fresh water or any soil and it can grow in any environment with no pressure on the landscape. It also absorbs CO2 and releases oxygen, so it's a carbon positive crop with endless potential to clean the air as it grows.

Space10's team were able to produce 450 litres of microalgae in three days, making it a super quick, sustainable crop.

Whatever it ends up being used for, microalgae farming could be the future.

Join the community for sustainable living, ethical fashion and eco travel

Share this article