Indonesia is the second-largest seaweed producer worldwide after China, with an export volume of 195,574 tonnes valued at USD 278.58 million in 2020 (https://kkp.go.id/djpb/artikel/32618-tingkatkan-pertumbuhan-ekonomi-kkp-komitmen-genjot-produksi-rumput-laut). Therefore, the Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries of the Republic of Indonesia (KKP) is committed to focusing on increasing the productivity of seaweed as a superior export commodity.
In realizing the commitment, KKP held the Seaweed Fest 2021 on 20 December 2021, collaborating with the Tropical Seaweed Innovation Network (TSIN). This event was officially opened by the Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries, Mr. Sakti Wahyu Trenggono, MM. “Indonesia has great potential in exporting seaweed. For that purpose, we need to focus on developing technology for seaweed seeds procurement, supported by multi-stakeholders”, said Mr. Sakti.
SEAMEO BIOTROP participated in the Seaweed Fest 2021 by displaying the existing achievements and way forward programs in increasing seaweed productivity in Indonesia. When visiting the booth of SEAMEO BIOTROP, the Minister of Marine Affairs and Fisheries uttered his directions to strengthen collaboration with SEAMEO BIOTROP. In response to the Minister’s direction, the Director of Production of the Directorate General of Aquaculture, Mr. Arif Wibowo, shared that the collaboration between KKP and SEAMEO BIOTROP has been going on since 2014 with the collaboration scopes as follows: 1. Technology transfer on tissue culture; 2. Micropropagule procurement; 3. Distribution of seaweed seedlings propagated by using tissue culture techniques; 4. Technology assistance. As the results of the collaboration, KKP has 6 established tissue culture laboratories located at 6 different fisheries agencies in Indonesia, i.e., Balai Besar Pengembangan Budidaya Laut Lampung, Balai Pengembangan Budidaya Laut Lombok, Balai Pengembangan Budidaya Laut Ambon, Balai Pengembangan Budidaya Air Payau Takalar, Balai Besar Pengembangan Budidaya Air Payau Jepara and Balai Pengembangan Budidaya Air Payau Situbondo.
SEAMEO BIOTROP’s way forward programs in seaweed are:
- Enhance the capacity of SEAMEO BIOTROP tissue culture laboratory for scaling up the production of seaweed seedlings propagated by using the tissue culture technique.
- Establish the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for propagating Cottoni seaweed by using the tissue culture technique. The SOP will then be disseminated to various institutions having roles in developing seaweed cultivation and industry. Therefore, more stakeholders will use the technology for seaweed research and development of seaweed seedlings procurement.
- Expand network with various stakeholders, such as ministries, local governments, universities, research institutions, private companies, to apply tissue culture technology for seaweed seedlings procurement.
- Conduct further studies to collect superior seaweed from various parts of Indonesia to be mass propagated for producing superior seaweed seedlings. The studies aim to enrich seaweed genetic diversity propagated by using tissue culture techniques to withstand any environmental conditions in the cultivation location.
These way forward programs are designed to further develop seaweed propagation by using tissue culture technique and to continuously mass-produce seaweed seedlings in fulfilling the demand from seaweed fishermen. (es, sis, hcn).