Products Obtained from Algae
It is gelatinous in nature, and is an ingredient used in many different Japanese desserts. The Japanese red bean jelly called Mizuyōkan, is made from this product, and is a very popular delicacy. Agar is commercially produced with the help of Gelidium amansii - a species of red algae.
Agar is utilized quite commonly as a laxative, and has been used as a vegetarian substitute for gelatin. Sometimes, it is also added as a soup thickening agent. In Southeast Asia, it is commonly used in jellies, ice creams, and desserts. It is also used as an industrial clarifying agent for brewing and paper sizing fabrics.
It is a viscous gum-like substance, which is derived from algae. It is used as an additive in dehydrated products. It is an important ingredient in the manufacturing of papers and textiles. It is also used in the water-proofing and fire-proofing industry. It is especially helpful in making fabrics that are fire and water-resistant.
In the pharmaceutical industry, it is used in the manufacture of medicines like Gaviscon, Asilone, Bisodol, etc. It is used as a mold making material in life casting, prosthetics, and dentistry. Like most of the forms or products of algae, alginic acid is used extensively in the food processing industry as an ingredient of soups and jellies.
This is one of the substances, which has been derived from the red algae, and is found near the Irish coastline. Like many algal products, it is used as an ingredient in food products, such as ice creams, milkshakes, and sauces, to increase the viscosity of the delicacy.
In many parts of Europe, local beer and alcoholic drink manufacturers use carrageenan as a protein remover. Manufacturers of processed and canned meats also use it as a substitute for fats. This compound also increases the water retaining capacity of meat products. It is also prominently used in shampoos, toothpaste, diet sodas, pet food, and soy milk.
Fuels from Algae
The energy crisis that hit the world in the recent decades has triggered off the race for invention of effective, as well as cheap biofuels. Algae oleum is one of the 3rd generation biofuels that has been derived from such weed plants. Many forms of algal fuels like cooking oil, biodiesel, bio-ethanol, bio-gasoline, etc., are in the process of development.
Algae can also be used to treat sewage, and are an excellent alternative for chemical fertilizers. They can also be used to curb and arrest the toxic chemicals present in the water bodies. Algae are also the ideal substitute for chemical dyes and pigments. In many industries, algal bioreactors are used to curb the emission of carbon and carbon compounds.