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Hawaii Embraces the Cultural Role of Seaweed by Declaring 2022 the “Year of the Limu”

Last month Hawaii’s Governor David Ige signed a proclamation declaring 2022 the Year of the Limu, a culmination of efforts by native advocates and organizations that seek to bring to light the enormous cultural importance that seaweeds can play. 

Limu is a Polynesian term for edible plants that come from the sea, such as seaweed and other types of algae. Limu has been an important component of cultures around the Pacific for centuries, widely revered for its environmental, nutritional and medicinal potential. This latest effort serves to rekindle and recognize Limu’s significance, especially as the world seeks nature-based solutions to challenges of climate change, food production and land use. 

“This proclamation affirms that the State of Hawaii recognizes the importance of our work as advocates and educators in passing on traditional ecological limu knowledge to make our home a better place for future generations,” said Uncle Wally Ito of Kua’aina Ulu ‘Auamo, an innovative, community-based initiative focused on protecting the ecosystems and way of life in Hawaii.

Ito was a keynote speaker at ABO’s 2021 Algae Biomass Summit, where he presented a framework for ecological sustainability that includes how algae and seaweeds play a crucial role in Hawaiian life. This approach can be an inspiration to everyone in the ABO community as we build out opportunities for algae around the world.

ABO was a strong supporter of the legislative effort in Hawaii to make 2002 the Year of the Limu. As the trade organization for the industry, we deeply understand the value of these ancient plants as the foundation of a sustainable environment and as a vital nutritional and food source.  

The recognition by the State of Hawaii is a great milestone for the future of algae. ABO congratulates those that made it possible! 

More coverage of Hawaii’s “Year of the Limu” can be found here:

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