The Aotearoa New Zealand Seaweed Association (ANZSA) was formed following a meeting in Nelson on the 8th of July 2021, organized by Aquaculture New Zealand, of those interested in developing the Aotearoa New Zealand seaweed sector.
Subsequently a working group was formed to establish the Association and refine the purpose, vision and values, which were tabled at the initial Nelson meeting. The inaugural meeting of ANZSA was held on the 7th of December 2021, where an Interim Board was established. The first Board election was held in December/January 2023 and the first elected Board appointed.
ANZSA provides a united voice on matters which promote our vision of a high value, nature positive seaweed industry for Aotearoa New Zealand. We are working to grow an industry that delivers healthy marine ecosystems, thriving communities and is a significant contributor to the Aotearoa New Zealand economy.
Collaboration ⎯ Mahi tahi
We work together across the seaweed ecosystem, with iwi and the entire stakeholder landscape to fulfill our vision.
Integrity ⎯ Ngākau tapatahi
We build trust in our sector through honourable practices and commitment to quality standards.
Sustainability ⎯ Kaitiakitanga
We are committed to ensuring our natural seaweed resources are available for future generations to enjoy, we see sustainability as an integral factor across the economy, society and the environment.
Multiple Knowledge Systems ⎯ Mātauranga
We respect the rich diversity of knowledge that will help build an enduring seaweed industry. Science, Mātauranga Māori, local practitioner knowledge and international perspectives will all contribute to our success.
Future thinking ⎯ Titiro whanui
We think beyond the challenges of today so that we create an enduring industry that is beneficial for our people and place.
Interim Board Members
Please participate in our upcoming Board Election
Clare Bradley (Chair)
Clare has been working in the small but enthusiastic seaweed sector for 16 years. As CEO of AgriSea Clare has developed international relationships across all levels of the seaweed ecosystem, from conservation, aquaculture, product innovation, research, end users and remote coastal communities. Clare is passionate about seeing a sector thrive that is good for people and the planet.
Blair Wolfgram (Deputy Chair)
Blair is an experienced Director with a successful history of governance and investment in real estate, aquaculture, technology, and finance. Blair is the Managing Director of the land based aquaculture park at Ocean Beach in Bluff and is excited about the possibility of expanding Aotearoa New Zealand’s seaweed industry. Blair has a bachelor in commerce and a bachelor in property from the University of Auckland.
Alex Pressman (Treasurer)
Alex graduated from University of Minnesota and started his career in Industrial and Pharmaceutical chemical sales at Mitsubishi Int’l Corp in Chicago.
He completed an MBA from Middlebury College of International Studies at Monterey, CA and Executive MBA from Stanford Graduate Business School. Alex later managed computer software R&D, testing and product management teams at Borland and Oracle. He founded Uniscape – a software company which he grew to 160 people before selling it and shifting to New Zealand.
He founded Waikaitu in 2012 to turn the marine invasive seaweed problem into economic opportunity for NZ.
Richard Laverty (Secretary)
Richard holds a degree in Chemical and Process Engineering (Hons) and a Diploma in Dairy Science & Technology (Post Grad).
His career experience includes research, food processing, high value food ingredient development, international business development and investment attraction, gained from 11 years with New Zealand Trade and Enterprise and 22 years with Fonterra prior to that.
He is currently employed as Chief Advisor – Economic Development, at the Ministry of Maori Development in Wellington, working on Maori economic resilience, enterprise policy and strategy and international indigenous collaboration.
Having grown up in Dunedin, he connects back regularly with family in Otago, as well as to Germany where he met is his wife, Jacky. Out of work interests include live music, sailing, skiing, and walking the Miramar peninsular in Wellington (on a good day). He is an active angel investor, involved in governance and growth of early-stage ventures.
Pacific Harvest, Managing Director
With a background in trade development and global marketing, Hayley is a relative newcomer to the seaweed industry. She’s powered by the opportunity to nourish people and the planet.
Hayley co-owns and runs Pacific Harvest, an edible seaweed specialist, which celebrated it’s 20th birthday in 2022. They are leading a movement to a future where delicious seaweeds are eaten every day, and are continually inspired by the wonders of seaweed and how it can improve life on our earth.
Dr Dave Taylor
Technical Director at Aquaculture New Zealand
Dave is based in Nelson, where he manages delivery of the Innovation and Technical, and Biosecurity portfolios at Aquaculture New Zealand, helping to grow aquaculture in NZ to a $3 billion industry by 2035. He is a marine ecologist by training, holding a PhD in Zoology from the University of Canterbury. His PhD looked at environmental and biological drivers affecting the distribution of habitat-forming seaweeds on rocky shores. Prior to working at Aquaculture New Zealand, Dave worked as a Senior Coastal Scientist at Cawthron Institute in Nelson where he specialised in work to understand the effects of aquaculture on the marine environment, and the effects of the environment on aquaculture species. Dave is a father of two who in his spare time likes thrashing around in the wilderness in multi-day adventure races.
Professor Richard Furneaux
Richard is a Distinguished Scientist at the Ferrier Research Institute of Victoria University of Wellington. On 1st February 2023, he stepped down from the role of Institute Director, to pursue research and business engagement activities on a full-time basis. The Ferrier is New Zealand’s leading Applied Organic Chemistry and Synthetic Biology R&D capability, with more than 50 science staff and 20 PhD students, bringing better drugs, materials and technology to the world.
Richard has a particular expertise in carbohydrate chemistry and in the chemical composition and uses of seaweeds. He has co-authored 201 peer-reviewed journal articles, 48 of which have reported studies on seaweeds, mostly those found in New Zealand, and been named as an inventor on 22 international patent families. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society Te Apārangi and of the New Zealand Institute of Chemistry, was awarded the Hector Medal in 2006 and the Thomson Award in 2012, was selected as Wellingtonian of the Year in Science & Technology in 2013 and won both the KiwiNet Supreme Award and the Research Entrepreneur Award in 2017.
Lucas is passionate that Aotearoa New Zealand realises the significant economic, environmental, social and cultural benefits which seaweeds offer.
He began his seaweed journey in 2012 and is excited by the energy, focus and momentum which is building for our developing sector.
As Chief Executive Officer and founder of Premium Seas, Lucas contributes to innovative seaweed cultivation and product development projects.
Following the Board elections, the work stream for this association will be prioritized and agreed upon. Feedback from members will be sought to develop a prioritised work stream around ANZSA’s purpose. A workshop is likely to follow where the ANZSA strategy will be set.
During/after this period, it is likely the working logo for ANZSA will be reviewed, and further development of the ANZSA website will be undertaken.