Outdoor Mass Production of Spirulina: The Basic Concept

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The past ten years have witnessed a burst of activity relating to production of microalgae for commercial purposes. From a modest beginning of Chlorella tablets in Japan in the late 1950s, new endeavors have emerged as specialized industries the world over aimed at producing health food, food additives, animal feed, biofertilizers and an assortment of natural products (Richmond 1986a, 1986b; Borowitzka and Borowitzka, 1988). The development of algal biotechnology is reviewed in the introduction to this volume. A more detailed account of the problems and day-to-day maintenance parameters involved in large-scale operation is given in Chapter 8. I have tried to describe briefly the history of Spirulina as a staple in human diet in the preface to this volume. The purpose of this chapter is to provide the reader with basic information on outdoor mass cultivation of algae, establishing a scientific ground to methods used in commercial production sites as well as suggesting improvements to obtain a higher output rate from the system, leading presumably to a reduction in production cost, thus making outdoor mass production of Spirulina more commercially feasible.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSpirulina platensis (Arthrospira)
Subtitle of host publicationPhysiology, Cell-biology and Biotechnology
EditorsAvigad Vonshak
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Edition1st Edition
ISBN (Electronic)9780429079948
ISBN (Print)9780748406746, 1482272970
StatePublished - May 1997


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