about our kelp

One of our favorite questions!
When kelp is growing in the ocean it is a rich brown color. It turns a gorgeous, natural green when exposed to hot water (our ready-cut and cubes are first blanched and then frozen to give our products a delicious, ready-to-eat flavor and texture).

When kept raw (unblanched), like the kelp in our Sea-Chi and Sea-Beet Kraut, it maintains a beautiful earthy green color. Unlike the unnatural bright green of most seaweed salads on the market, which includes dyes like yellow #5 and blue #1, our seaweed salad and all kelp products are never dried or dyed. Because kelp is beautiful, clean, and delicious just as it is.

Yes! All of our products are gluten-free.

Totally. We use some crazy-fun techniques to get wild kelp to spore off (and make millions of little kelp babies) and then protect them in our nursery until they are ready to go back out and grow in the ocean on our partner farms.

Our kelp is vegan - as are all of our products except for our Sea-Chi (which is produced off-site). And, as an added bonus, kelp boosts your B-2, iodine, calcium, and Omega-3s - all of which are hard to get enough of on a vegan diet.

Our sea veggies need to stay cold or frozen - and traditional shipping packaging for frozen goods includes a whole lot of polystyrene. To learn more about why we think polystyrene isn't great, read this or this. Instead, we use 100% recyclable PET fiber post-consumer plastic. While it is more environmentally friendly, it just doesn't keep things as cold for quite as long. Until packaging technology improves, we are shipping everything with overnight or 2-day shipping. 

We recommend that you defrost our Ready-Cut Kelp by either putting the pouches in water overnight in the fridge, or running them under water for around 5 minutes until defrosted. 

Our seaweed grows in the ocean and is a marine organism. We do our very best to ensure that all the kelp that gets to you is free of these allergens, but we can’t guarantee that there aren’t trace amounts of shellfish in our final product. Allergy sufferers should consult their doctor before eating our product.

Our Ready-Cut Kelp and Kelp Cubes are both frozen products. After they are defrosted, they have a 12-day shelf life in your fridge (though we recommend that you use the cubes in their frozen form in smoothies, soups, sauces, etc). Our Seaweed Salad, Sea-Chi, and Sea-Beet Kraut are fermented and can last in your refrigerator for up to 1 year (though we are sure that you will eat them long before that!). 

Our Ready-Cut Kelp is ready-to-eat right out of the pouch and is delicious served cold in a salad, wrap, or sandwich, but also amazing cooked into any meal! Hot or cold, Ready-Cut Kelp is versatile and delish! 

As long as your products are still cold when they arrive, they should still be just fine. Kelp freezes and defrosts twice a day in the ocean with the tides, so it can be refrozen without compromising the quality of the product. As soon as you get our Kelp Cubes and/or Ready Cut Kelp, throw them back in the freezer and use or thaw when you are ready. The fermented products are refrigerated, so you don't have to worry there!

benefits of kelp

Considered a superfood, this delicious sea veggie is popularly known as a great source of iodine, a vital nutrient that helps support healthy thyroid function and metabolism. Kelp has also been found to have anti-inflammatory properties and serve up antioxidants.

BONUS: kelp contains notable amounts of iron, manganese, calcium, magnesium, copper, zinc, riboflavin, niacin, thiamin, plus vitamins A, B-12, B-6, and C!

We think that there should be a little bit of kelp on just about everything. In your smoothies, on harvest bowls, and even starring in salads, soups, and sandwiches (or, heck, we eat our Seaweed Salad, Sea-Chi, and Sea-Beet Kraut right out of the jar!).

Try adding kelp to your favorite breakfast bar or protein bite recipe! For more recipe ideas, check out our recipe page and subscribe to our blog to see the great ideas we have in store for our kelp (and your kitchen).

We are incredibly proud of the integrity of our kelp, both for people and for the planet. In fact, did you know that there are no inputs required to rope-grow kelp? No arable land, no fresh water, and never any pesticides or herbicides. Additionally, kelp mitigates the effects of ocean acidification and excess CO2 in our oceans.

So if improving the health of our oceans and atmosphere is considered sustainable, then we would proudly argue that kelp is kind of the golden child.

Our kelp is mild and tender – so it’s easy to toss  into a salad or soup without even the most skeptical eaters turning up their noses. But, like any green veggie, it can be a challenge to get the littles (or, maybe your partner) to admit they like kelp. We get it. Our CEO is a mother of two very-picky boys under the age of 5 and likes to stick one of our Kelp Cubes into a morning smoothie of blueberries, yogurt, mangos, and oat milk – they are none the wiser!

And, like most picky eaters, they will soon be happily eating their greens like the rest of us. Hopefully.

about atlantic sea farms

We proudly grow our kelp in the clean, cold waters of the Gulf of Maine. Food tastes better - and is better for you - when it is cultivated in a reliably clean environment. We even (often!) snag a few bites of the raw kelp right out of the ocean on our partner farms - it’s just that clean and that good.

Wild kelp is an integral part of our healthy coastal ecosystem, and has supplemented the diets of Maine’s coastal residents for centuries.  That said, there is a limit to the amount of wild kelp that can be harvested sustainably, and due to climate change, wild beds are facing increased stress from warming waters and invasive species. By farming kelp, we add to the natural ecosystem, remediating excess CO2 while taking pressure off of wild beds from human harvest.

Plus, by farming our kelp, we are better able to control quality in our own supply chain, ensuring that the Atlantic Sea Farms kelp you eat is of the best possible quality.  By growing seaweed, we are improving the ocean - and we are proud of that.

We grow seaweed that improves water quality and helps to mitigate the effects of ocean acidification. We want to shout it from the rooftops. Read more at Ocean Approved.

Other than the fact that they are the best dang kelpers out there?  Well, we love and respect the coastal Maine communities we call home. The future of local fisheries is increasingly vulnerable due to climate change, especially in the Gulf of Maine, and the lobster monoculture is the single largest driver of our coastal economy. Today the lobster fishery is booming, but without it, Maine’s fishing communities would have little else to turn to.

The Gulf of Maine is warming faster than 99% of the world’s oceans due to climate change, and as we see challenges to our coastal economies on the horizon, we are dedicated to working with Maine fishermen to diversify their incomes by starting seaweed farms. We provide technical support, lease support, and gear set-up and harvest training – as well as free seeds – to our partner farmers. Read more about our mission, and our partner farmers.

Every one of our partner kelp farmers knows a thing or two about the ocean. We work primarily with lobstermen up and down the coast of Maine during their “off season”. In the fall, we produce millions of little kelp babies in our state of the art seaweed nursery from wild sources that we provide free of charge to our partner farmers that then continue to grow out in the ocean. Throughout the winter and spring, we provide technical support to these farmers as they grow these babies into 10+ foot long blades of kelp. We’ve managed to foster a growing community of  farmers producing the best quality kelp anywhere. Learn more about each one of our partner farmers.

We’re total seaweed nerds and are always playing around with new ideas for native-to-Maine varieties and new product ideas. Don’t worry, we’ll keep you in the loop!

You can enjoy Atlantic Sea Farms kelp in a growing list of high-end restaurants, fast-casual chains, universities, hospitals, smoothie shops, bakeries, and spots across the country that have heard the call of Maine kelp. We’ve recently launched an exciting new lineup of retail products that are available for you to enjoy at home! Stores throughout New England carry Atlantic Sea Farms products. You can also now order from us directly! 

Also, if you want to see our kelp in your local stores, please let them know, and thank you for helping us #kelptheearth!