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Maritime Forum
News article31 October 2023Directorate-General for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries3 min read

EU4Algae The Insider’s Perspective: Discover how 3 innovative initiatives are improving the EU algae sector with novel solutions!

To give visibility to EU4Algae members’ key research findings, business opportunities and innovations relevant to the algae sector, we are kicking off a dedicated section where we will be ‘giving the floor’ to all partners to share their projects and success stories and disseminate them with the Algae community. Keep reading to know more about the three ones who made it to this first edition!

BettaF!ish: Revolutionising the food industry with zero-input seaweed from Europe

BettaF!ish is a seaweed company that focuses on developing plant-based tuna alternatives. Founded in 2020 and headquartered in Berlin, Germany, BettaF!ish has the priority of preserving he oceans. By turning zero-input seaweed from Europe into a commodity for the food industry, the company is building a whole new category of maritime foods while increasing biodiversity in the maritime ecosystem. The company launched its first product called “TU-NAH” in October 2021, which is an authentic alternative to canned tuna on the market. BettaF!ish also created a product portfolio for retail, including their flagship “TU-NAH Sandwiches” and “TU-NAH can”, plus also launched the raw “TU-NAH masse” into food service and B2B.

Through passion and pioneering innovation, BettaF!ish is revolutionising the food industry and making a positive impact on the environment.

Tuna Can Product


CIRCALGAE project: Valorising the algae waste streams from existing algae farms in Europe

The CIRCALGAE project is interested in the most relevant macro- and microalgae biomass exploited in a sustainable way (change of cultivation parameters, considering seasonality or specificity of the cultivation region in different algae species). It aims to build a viable economic model and propose new products adapted to the market by integrating relevant players and stakeholders.

Algae biomass is highly underexploited, and its efficient utilisation is one of the main challenges in current and future EU marine policies towards sustainability. This Horizon Europe co-funded project started in October 2022 and will last 4 years and aims to boost the blue bioeconomy by applying an integrated biorefinery concept to valorise the massively processed and vastly underexploited algae industrial waste streams from the phycolloid production from macroalgae and protein/lipid microalgae industries. CIRCALGAE’s simple, water-based technologies allow the upcycling of these waste streams into value-added ingredients to be used in specific texturised vegan foods, protein-rich feed, health-promoting ingredients, and cosmetic formulations, in 12 demonstrator products, 2 of which will be qualified for the market.
Through co-creating and co-learning, CIRCALGAE aims to connect all algae cross-sectional actors for the validation of all health-promoting effects and claims, regulatory aspects and environmental, economic and social impacts, engaging all relevant stakeholders in the primary sector to re-shape the current industrial network for a future thriving blue bioeconomy.

SCALE project: Creating the world’s first fully-integrated microalgae biorefinery

The SCALE project is an EU-funded initiative that strives to build and operate the world’s first fully-integrated microalgae biorefinery to produce natural active ingredients of high nutritional value for the food, food supplements, feed and cosmetics sectors through economically-sound and environmentally-friendly processes.
This flagship plant scale-up the microalgae production process from a demonstration-scale to a Flagship industrial scale with an annual production of more than 100 tons of high-value ingredients and will be in Baillargues, near Montpellier (South of France). The project is led by Microphyt, a French leading biotechnology SME specialising in the extraction of natural bioactive compounds from microalgae.

SCALE brings together 11 renowned partners from 5 European countries at different stages of the value chain. The project is carried out over 48 months, from June 2021 to May 2025, with an overall budget of € 24.7M including € 15M funding from the BBI JU programme, the public-private partnership between the European Commission and the Bio-Based Industries Consortium. 
From a technical-economic perspective, the SCALE project aims to:

  • Produce, on a large scale, a first-of-its-kind bio-based value chain to manufacture safe and high-performing novel products from microalgae.
  • Ensure the continuous supply of the plant.
  • Cover the entire value chain, starting from raw materials supply to the production of high-added-value products.
  • Meet market demand by demonstrating the efficiency, quality, purity, and safety of end- products in full conformity with EU and FDA regulations.

On the socio-environmental front, it aims to ensure the sustainability of the Flagship Plant and its products by operating the plant as a truly integrated biorefinery, converting biomass into a variety of products without generating waste. Key technologies will be implemented to optimise energy efficiency, reduce carbon emissions, and boost the productivity of microalgae biomass and bioactive compounds. Additionally, it aims to align with the regions’ development strategies by actively getting involved in the training and employment of young graduates and promoting local suppliers to meet environmental standards.


Publication date
31 October 2023
Directorate-General for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries