Seagriculture USA

11 - 12 September 2024

Ketchikan, Alaska, USA

Development of marine agronomy in Chile: research developments and policy actions towards increasing production, diversification, and value-adding

Alejandro H. Buschmann, Full Professor, Universidad de Lagos, Chile

About speaker:

Alejandro H. Buschmann is Full Professor at i-mar Research Center (www.i-mar.cl) at the Universidad de Los Lagos, obtaining its Ph.D. at the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile. At the present he is also a senior researcher at the Centre for Biotechnology and Bioengineering (www.cebib.cl) and the Marine Agronomy Center (https://mileniomash.cl). With over 150 peer-reviewed papers and book chapters, in aspects of coastal ecology, seaweed aquaculture, focusing on the role on integrated multi-trophic aquaculture (IMTA) towards a sustainable aquaculture development. Due to his scientific achievements, he was eligible as member of the Chilean Academy of Science. In the present he is part of editorial committees of scientific journals like Aquaculture, Aquaculture Environment Interactions, Reviews in Fisheries Science and Aquaculture, Perspective in Phycology, and Associate editor of the Journal of Phycology, Journal of applied Phycology and Algal Research. He was the Director of Research and Graduate School at the Universidad de Los Lagos and head of i-mar research Center. He has been designated in different scientific panels of the Chilean Science Agency as well as in national commissions for graduate program quality certification (CNA). As a scientific consultant, he has been able to support seaweed culture developments with the industry and the promotion of the use sustainable environmental technologies for aquaculture with different world stakeholders.


i-mar Research Center is an academic unit at the Universidad de Los Lagos based in Puerto Montt, Chile. Its most relevant research activities are related to environmental marine sciences. i-mar Research Center offers graduate studies (Master’s and PhD) in ecology and conservation of natural resources and is keen to participate in collaborative research actions on seaweed ecology, conservation and cultivation.


Seaweed production is undergoing a global expansion. Currently, the seaweed industry supports the livelihood of millions of small-scale farmers and processors, including women, demonstrating its potential to drive the development of many coastal areas worldwide. A relevant proportion of seaweed production goes to human consumption, especially in Asian countries, and to the polysaccharide industry. A growing commercial demand for higher-value seaweed-derived products, such as cosmetics and pharmaceuticals, has driven a less significant proportion of global seaweed production. However, expanding seaweed production outside Asian countries still faces strong challenges, such as the production consolidation based on a changing global climatic context that exists at present, embracing the control of diseases and grazers outbreaks, environmental stress conditions (e.g., heat waves, water quality), but more importantly a relevant market demand that allows to sustain farming activities economically. These challenges require the development of more profitable markets and increased biomass productivity. Regarding these challenges, R&D approaches have been under development in Chile to ensure sustainable and productive development, new alternative market creation, and actions allowing changes in country aquaculture policies between other major tasks.

Financial Support: FONDECYT (1221161), CeBiB (FB-0001), MASH (NCN2021_033).