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Wade

The future of material science.

We specialize in the development and production of innovative materials by combining cutting-edge technological innovation and environmental awareness to transform sustainably sourced, renewable resources into high-quality, value-added products.

We work in collaboration with various universities and research centres across Canada, including the Université de Sherbrooke, the Institut National de la Recherche Scientifique, Innofibre (part of the Université du Québec à Trois- Rivières), as well as Merinov, Lakehead University, and Innovation Maritime to advance the seaweed industry here in North America by developing the science and technology necessary for the viable production of seaweed and seaweed-based materials, and solidify our long-term competitive advantage in both national and international markets.

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Goal

To make this province — and all of Canada — the epicentre of new technological solutions that we can use to develop the supply chains necessary for the viable production of seaweed-based products, leveraging our geographical advantages to solidify our position as leaders in a rapidly expanding global industry.

We want to help build a strong and reliable circular economy by turning sustainably sourced, renewable resources into high-quality materials that can be used by a wide range of commercial industries and in the end, be upcycled into new products. This closed-loop system can be used to minimize waste, conserve valuable resources, and generate new, high-quality products that ultimately, will contribute to building a more sustainable and resilient economy for all.

Mission

To transform sustainably sourced seaweed into high-quality, innovative products while sequestering greenhouse gases, helping restore and support local marine habitats, and growing the marine aquaculture industry here in Quebec by creating reliable and long-lasting career opportunities for communities across the province.

Team

Our team is composed of highly experienced, motivated individuals that are passionate about exploring and developing innovative solutions that solve problems without creating new ones in the process. We bring academics, engineers, chemical scientists, sailors, and climate activists together to share in our common vision and to work together in building a future that is better for people, and the planet.

Innofibre (Part of the Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières)

With multiple decades of accumulated experience in the paper industry, Innofibre is one of Canada’s top cellulose-specific research institutes. Unique across North America, Innofibre specializes in the development and optimization of cellulosic products and the extraction and valorization of biomass. As a CCTT (Centre Collégial de Transfert de Technologie), they have a fully operational pilot-scale biomass processing and paper manufacturing facility, as well as an industry-grade surface coating line. We can make use of these facilities and leverage Innofibre’s extensive industry experience to develop and test our methodologies in an industrial setting, allowing us to smoothly scale up our processes as we move toward full-scale commercialization.

Innovation Maritime

Affiliated with the Institut Maritime du Québec (IMQ), and part of the Cégep de Rimouski, Innovation Maritime is a leading applied research institute led by experienced representatives from all parts of the marine industry here in Canada. With over 20 years of experience and nearly 400 research projects completed, their mission is to contribute to the development of the marine sector in Canada and support companies through innovation, technical assistance, and distribution of knowledge.

Institut National de la Recherche Scientifique (INRS)

With over 50 years of interdisciplinary research and training, as well as being one of Quebec’s top rated research institutes for project efficiency and success, the Institut National de la Recherche Scientifique is one of Canada’s leading bioresource development research centres. Also a CCTT (Centre Collégial de Transfert de Technologie), they are equipped with a fully operational pilot-scale biomass extraction plant, and we can make use of their extensive array of equipment and knowledge to scale our operations seamlessly and mitigate as much risk as possible.

Lakehead University

Home to more than 26 cutting-edge research centres and over 50 years of research experience, the resources and know-how that Lakehead University provide to our projects is unmatched. Having been named one of the top research universities in Canada for five years in a row, they have been critical in our development of seaweed-based hydrogels and paper-related solutions.

Merinov

Merinov is the leading research institute in Canada for any work related to seaweed and seaweed aquaculture. As Quebec’s top CCTT (Centre Collégiale de Transfert de Technologie) in seaweed-related innovation, they carry over a decade of experience developing the country’s most comprehensive inventory of geographic data, and they’ve proven to be vital in our efforts to develop and deploy our innovative seaweed cultivation system.

Université de Sherbrooke

Since its inception, the Université de Sherbrooke has been renowned for its expertise in the development of novel materials and has a long history of working with private corporations on innovative research projects. With over 100 different collaborating research institutes and many decades of experience developing innovative science and technology, the Université de Sherbrooke has cemented itself as a leader in academic and private collaborations that push scientific progress forward.

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Vision

To spearhead the introduction of new industries here in North America and cement ourselves as global leaders in the development of seaweed cultivation and transformation technology, as well as in the production of seaweed-derived compounds and value-added materials.

Impact

The science and innovation we’re dedicated to working on not only has the potential of creating significant economic benefits, it can also be used to strengthen and preserve the natural resources native to the regions in which we operate. Seaweed is not only one of our best natural tools in the fight against climate change, it can also be leveraged to create new and reliable opportunities for coastal areas across the country, particular rural regions in northern Canada where consistent, high-paying jobs could greatly benefit Indigenous communities that only have access to a limited number of commercial industries.

Economic

As overfishing remains a prominent issue around the globe, and crashing fish stocks as well as instability in coastal job markets make it harder for communities to grow and build long-lasting socio-economic infrastructure, the development and introduction of new and reliable aquacultural markets is necessary.

The implementation of large-scale seaweed cultivation and the commercial production of seaweed-based materials would not only create a consistent employment platform for individuals, but would also help attract and retain highly qualified personnel in areas that would otherwise have no need for them, helping boost local economies and promote an increase in population. The introduction of new industries would also help drive new commercial opportunities for businesses looking to participate, and spark further technological innovation.

Furthermore, much of Canada’s economy is still heavily reliant on foreign markets. As the usage of seaweed-derived compounds continues to grow throughout the pharmaceutical, cosmetics, food, and supplementation industries both here in North America and abroad, so will our dependence on international supply chains. According to the World Bank, 98% of the world’s farmed seaweed is still dominated by Asia. Developing the scientific and technological infrastructure to begin manufacturing these goods here in Quebec would not only make them cheaper in comparison to international competitors, it would also make us more economically independent and competitive on a global scale.

Environmental

Seaweed soaks up to five times more carbon dioxide than land-based plants and stabilizes local pH levels through the absorption, sequestration, and transformation of dissolved carbon dioxide into organic carbon, which helps prevent ocean acidification. It’s also one of the fastest growing plants in the world. With the advancements we’re making in next-generation seaweed cultivation technology, our network of farms will sequester nearly 20 million metric tons of carbon dioxide from the ocean every year by 2035. That’s a quarter of Quebec’s annual greenhouse gas emissions converted into sustainable, high-quality products that will not only boost our economy, but will also help people live healthier, happier lives.

On top of that, it’s a zero-input plant. It requires no fresh water, no fertilizer, no feed, and no land to grow, which, in a rapidly evolving world, are vital resources that should be saved for other purposes. In the era of climate change — as water, food, and land prices continue to rise — seaweed is rapidly becoming the most affordable and sustainable biomass on the planet.

Seaweed farms can also act as artificial reefs and promote an increase in local biodiversity, while functioning as storm surge protectors which in turn can reduce the energy of currents and waves, thus providing protection for coastal communities and shellfish cultures. Seaweed also reduces eutrophication in coastal areas through the absorption of excess nitrogen and dissolved phosphorus, which increases the concentration of oxygen in the water and helps heal dead zones incapable of sustaining marine life. It’s a reliable, self-sustaining crop that can and should be leveraged for the betterment of people and the planet alike.

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