While many food companies are replacing beef burger patties with plant-based ones, a new startup is diving into the ocean for a different alternative to meat. The startup, Akua, has launched a new line of burgers made from kelp.
Why kelp—you might be asking? While plant-based foods are a greener alternative to meat, growing crops like peas, potatoes, and soy is still a resource-intensive process, requiring lots of land, freshwater, and fertilizer. Kelp, on the other hand, needs none of that. Not to mention kelp farms also naturally sequester a lot of carbon, which means that creating a larger market for kelp will actually help suck up more emissions.
Akua says there’s also a positive impact that comes with supporting kelp farmers, many of which are also fishermen. By allowing them to profit more off kelp, it may lessen the strain on the fishing supply. At the moment, Akua works with women-owned kelp farms off the coast of Maine to produce its burgers.
Along with kelp, the burgers also include cremini mushrooms, black beans, quinoa, crushed tomatoes, and pea protein, which are all ingredients you will find in Beyond Burgers. But while the kelp burger isn’t meant to mimic meat like Beyond Burgers, Akua believes it will still be satisfying to meat-eaters because kelp and mushrooms together provide an “umami bomb taste” that is “really satiating in the way that meat is.”
At the Optimist Daily, we can’t wait to try them ourselves!