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So…Riddle me this, Organic World

February 18, 2018

In the USA you cannot farm spirulina and achieve the USDA Certified Organic Seal yet outside countries with competing spirulina farms can. Countries such as China & India, can produce a spirulina crop, have it certified organic in their country under their organic rules and then export to the US in bulk or prepackaged in retail containers. There are companies in the USA that repack imported Spirulina and they provide foreign organic certification, which seems to meet the USDA approval and as a result receive permission to add the USDA Organic seal. In short, no USDA certified organic labeled spirulina sold in the USA was grown in the USA.

What, Why, How?…

…Let me back up and explain the most pressing question, “Why is it not possible for United States Spirulina producers to get USDA Certified Organic approval?”

In the United States “organic” is not a term that pertains to aquaculture, only agriculture. Spirulina is a micro-algae that is grown in water and not considered an “agricultural crop.” In order for agricultural crops to be considered “certified organic” they need to use nutrient sources approved as organic as well as meet various pesticide standards.

Organic compounds used in organic agriculture are derived from living plant or animal sources (ex: compost products, manure). The organic fertilizers do not come in direct contact with the edible portion of the plant and are therefore acceptable…
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Oh, the possibilities…

December 28, 2017

  • Eat it

  • Drink It

  • Roll in it

  • All of the above

  • No matter what your method, preferably all of the above, find a way to incorporate spirulina into your daily routine. This superfood blue-green algae is a versatile, nutrient- rich protein source that can be used in a plethora of ways both in and on your body!

    Initially, I found this fine, earthy smelling, deep green powder pretty intimidating, but I knew the health benefits outweighed the fear factor. Through a bit of trial and error, I found ways to get about 2-6 teaspoons of powder into my daily diet…

Here are some of my favorites:
Creamy drink: 8 oz almond milk , ½ tsp SoulFresh Spirulina Powder, 1 tsp agave …blend with a milk frother or shake vigorously. Makes a low calorie (about 60), filling snack.

Protein shake: 10 oz liquid of choice, 2 scoops of protein powder, 1 tsp Soulfresh Spirulina Powder, half a banana, handful of ice….blend.

Protein balls: 1C oats, ½ C honey, ½C nut butter, 1C shredded coconut,2 scoops protein powder, 1Tbl SoulFresh Spirulina…combine all ingredients, roll into balls and refrigerate.
For easy everyday consumption; sprinkle spirulina on freshly popped popcorn, add ¼ tsp to homemade vinaigrette for salads, add 1 Tbl into a batch of turkey chili (beware the color can be scary!), sprinkle on roasted veggies, combine panko, spirulina and other spices to make a coating for chicken tenders or fish tacos. The possibilities are endless! SoulFresh’s CrunchLina Spirulina Snack Clusters can be added to fruit with a drizzle of maple syrup, mixed into yogurt and salads, or just by the handful!

Spirulina is also great for the skin:
Body scrub: ½ cup grapeseed oil, 1 cup superfine sugar, 1 tsp of SoulFresh Spirulina, 10 drops of calming blend essential oil. Mix and pour into a mason jar. Use a small scoop for body and/or hands.
Face Mask: 1/2 tsp SoulFresh Spirulina powder, 1/2 tsp raw honey, 1/2 tsp plain unsweetened yogurt. Make a paste and smear on face…rinse with warm water…
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“Miranda, how in the world did you end up working for a Spirulina algae company?”

October 28, 2017

This is a question that I have become very used to hearing, in part due to the quirkiness of the position. The uniqueness of this company was a huge draw for me, but that aside I suppose that it is important to set the stage to answer this question.

I’m Miranda (or Randy), a recent graduate from Roger Williams University with a degree in Environmental Science and minors in Sustainability Studies and Business. Reading between the lines, this means that for the past four years my nose has been buried in books about topics ranging from environmental chemistry to atmospheric physics to the interaction of biology with the physical environment. A large portion of my education involved sustainability science and studying the interface of the environment, humans, and the economy. A solution to an issue is not truly sustainable unless it can be defended by social, economic, and environmental standpoints. THIS is the part of my education that drew me to work at Agcore Technologies…

So how exactly does my education relate to a start-up algae company? Sure, the two topics are within the sciences, but that is like saying a chihuahua and a great dane are both dogs- it’s not a lie, but there are some significant differences between the two. What drew me to this position wasn’t the actual Spirulina farming, but rather the cascading impacts that a product like this can have on the environment and people.

Let me explain… One serving of Spirulina algae contains all of the vitamins and minerals that a person requires on a daily basis. This is good news for people looking for an additive to their morning smoothie, but phenomenal news for people living in food deserts and malnourished populations. A food source like this has the potential to heal those who are sick, nurture those who are starving, and promote good health through the general community, making Spirulina exceptionally socially sustainable.
Spirulina requires minimal energy to grow, has a very fast growth rate, and is a plant-based protein source making it environmentally sustainable food in comparison to other protein sources such as chicken or beef. The business model for the Spirulina farm is economically sustainable and we are able to provide the public with product at a reasonable price. (For more info about our sustainability commitment look at (_link to sust committment_).

So all in all, I chose to work at Agcore Technologies because of its mission to create yummy food that heals people while healing the earth.

Cheers,
Randy

Comments:
· Kim P on December 31, 2017
My mom purchased the Crunchlina for me for xmas, she has heard me praise the nutritional value of Spirulina over the years, so when she saw it she thought I might like it. My husband and I LOVE this stuff!! Also appreciate and respect your business model! You have 2 new customers, and we will be sharing! Thank you!

· Marcia House on December 23, 2017
I just discovered your company and products at the NK farmers market. I’m very enthusiastic to hear of your spirulina farm and products! I love everything about it and will start using it daily. I’m giving it for Christmas gifts and I feel so happy to pass on this great sustainable product. Thank you thank you!!!!
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Necessity is the Mother of Invention

December 03, 2017

After being diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes it was important for me to find a snack food that I could work into my new eating lifestyle that was nutritious, delicious and diabetes-friendly. I had met with a Nutritionist and Dietician who gave me guidelines for both carbohydrate and protein intake during snacks; the amount of carbs was low and the protein was high.

I began my search and started with nuts, they satisfied my hunger without that bloated feeling and were easy to find in any store if I was out and about or traveling. There were a few others that came and went; low carb brownie bites, and lots of protein bars none of which I really loved and some that bothered my digestion. They were packed with calories and realistically more carbs I should consume for a meal let alone a snack!…

All along my husband Larry and I were working non-stop to build the spirulina farm, consuming our spirulina in it’s powder form in smoothies, drinks and experimenting adding it to sauces and recipes. I was not overly enthusiastic about spirulina-based snacks already on the market because they may have been nutritious and diabetes friendly but certainly weren’t delicious!

If necessity is the mother of invention, Larry is the father!

Sensing my frustration, one day he took nuts and seeds and enrobed them in our freshly harvested spirulina and dehydrated it at very low temperatures. He knew I would be brutally honest with my reviews. I got to the farm and he said, “try this”, it was a green cluster, packed with protein and low in carbs and it was DELICIOUS.

And so it began, I experimented with different formulas, added cinnamon (and some trade secrets) and CrunchLina was born! We had raised two great sons and now we had a new baby. Larry says that he invented it and I made it better! Over the past few years CrunchLina has taken on many shapes and sizes, been tested by hundreds of people and we are thrilled that it is now available to the masses.

My favorite way to eat CrunchLina is right out of the bag, similar to a trail mix – but that isn’t the only way! I sprinkle it on my hot or cold cereal in the morning and mix it in my yogurt at lunch. I love sharing CrunchLina with family and friends alike. The best part is hearing how they like to eat it. Diane told me that she put it on ice cream; Julie put it on oven-roasted veggies the last few minutes they were in the oven and always uses it as a salad topping. Everyone agrees, CrunchLina is filling, satisfying and not bloating; the perfect snack!
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