“Oh, that’s good,” he says. “Crisp and sweet. You can’t beat it when it’s fresh.”
It’s just another day at the office for Yarish – “Captain Seaweed” – a professor in UConn’s departments of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and Marine Sciences, who is using the expertise that’s made him a globally renowned seaweed specialist to help birth an entirely new industry up and down the East Coast.
Yarish, a tall, gregarious New York native with a brushy mustache and an infectious enthusiasm for his work, envisions a day when seaweed farms, using techniques developed at the University of Connecticut, stretch from one end of Long Island Sound to the other, producing a crop worth potentially more than $47 million annually.
But first, he’s got to get that strand of kelp off the boat and onto your dinner plate.