The Government of Australia works with the Government of Indonesia to increase seaweed productivity by developing a market system that benefits all market players in the seaweed sector in Indonesia.
The effort is implemented through the collaboration between the Directorate General of Fish Cultivation (Direktorat Jenderal Perikanan Budidaya/DJPB) of the Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries (Kementerian Kelautan dan Perikanan/KKP), Bappenas, and PRISMA with technical support from Yayasan Kalimajari, a local organisation focusing on community empowerment.
The collaboration is formalised through the signing of partnership agreement on “Improving Seaweed Seedling Production and Provision” program between DJPB KKP, PRISMA, and Yayasan Kalimajari which took place on 21 February 2020 at KKP office in Jakarta.
The Director-General of Fish Cultivation, Slamet Soebjakto stated that KKP has prepared a strategy to accelerate the increase of seaweed production which is in line with the national seaweed industrialisation roadmap for the next five years. In the roadmap, one of KKP’s missions is to provide high-quality seaweed seeds developed from tissue culture seedlings
“To support the mission, KKP will distribute 200 tonnes of seaweed seeds and 80 packages of seaweed nursery seeds through DJPB’s technical implementation units in Lampung, Situbondo, Ambon, Takalar, and Lombok,” as explained by Slamet.
Slamet added “To increase the economic value of seaweed cultivation, KKP will improve the ease of investment in the downstream market of the seaweed sector. The development of seaweed clusters on production centres will also be conducted to establish effective connectivity from upstream to downstream market in the purpose of generating higher added value.”
Slamet further elaborated, “the revenue from the export of processed seaweed products, such as Semi-Refined Carrageenan (SRC) and Refined Carrageenan (RC) can also be optimised through conducting training on post-harvest handling and processing techniques for seaweed farmers, processors, and sellers in the centres of seaweed cultivation.”
“By taking these strategic steps, the seaweed industry is hoped to be one of Indonesia’s main economic drivers that provides job opportunities and improves the welfare of the people,” as emphasised by Slamet.
The Australian Minister Councellor of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Robert Brink stated that the partnership between the Government of Australia and Indonesia is strategic in improving economic benefit for the people. “The partnership on increasing production and providing good-quality seaweed seed is an excellent example of joint efforts between market players to develop a better market system. We hope that PRISMA can support KKP in creating a better environment for business and investment.”
In response to that, PRISMA’s CEO, Goetz Ebbecke underlined the importance of collaboration with the government and private sector to improve the welfare of seaweed farmers, especially in remote areas. “PRISMA is ready to work with KKP and private sector companies to improve efficiency and market performance in the seaweed sector.”
The Director of Kalimajari, I Gusti Agung Ayu Widiastuti explained that this program is now at its second phase which will be started from this year until 2023. While the first phase was focused on strengthening the downstream market, the second phase is now shifting its focus to the upstream market, to ensure the availability of seaweed seeds in terms of its quantity and quality. “To place seaweed as one of Indonesia’s top-performing sectors in the future, we must build the sector through improving its quality, production, and access.”
“Kalimajari is in to develop the strategy with PRISMA and KKP to strategically position Indonesia as the world’s top seaweed producer,” said Ayu.