From: Antara NewsDenpasar, Bali (ANTARA News) - Bali aims at producing 155,000 tons of seaweed in 2011, head of the Bali fishery and marine agency Gusti Putu Nuriatha said here Saturday.
"The target is higher than last year`s 145 tons," he said.
He added that the increase in seaweed production could be achieved since only a small portion of Bali`s large potential has been used.
According to Putu Nuriatha, the potential 500 hectares of the waters of Buleleng coast, North Bali, has not been used for seaweed cultivation adequately.
Likewise, in Nusa Penida, 550 hectares of the small island located about 19 nautical miles southeast of mainland Bali, is also highly suitable for seaweed cultivation.
The a small part of the waters had also been used recently, whereas Nusa Penida waters are listed as a spinosum "museum", a rare kind of seaweed in the world.
Putu Nuriatha explained that spinosum seaweed species is a rare aquatic plant, and in Indonesia it is found only in the Nusa Penida coastal areas.
A number of researchers, both from the Bogor Institute of Agriculture and agricultural faculty of Udayana University, and some even from abroad, often called spinosum a rare species.
The researchers also admired that such rare species still grew in the Nusa Penida coastal areas which had not been adequately exploited by settlers or tourists.
In the future it is expected that the potential can be fully developed, so that production can be increased by 353 percent in the next five years, Putu Nuriatha hoped.
He was optimistic production targets set in 2011 can be achieved, considering that the Minister of Marine and Fisheries Affairs, Fadel Muhammad, had launched the Kutuh beach area, Jimbaran, Badung district, as a minapolitan of seaweed commodities.
The area has wide waters suitable for seaweed cultivation with a production of 600 tons per year.
As production is expected to be doubled, it will affect seaweed production in Bali, because Badung district contributes 50 percent of Bali`s seaweed production," Gusti Putu Nuriatha said.