Seaweeds are a primary source of hydrocolloids, which can be processed into various food additives, cosmetics, and pharmaceuticals. The inability of current commercial seaweed farming projects to meet industrial demands is underscored by a plethora of challenges, which include the lack of high-quality germplasm with the desired cultural characteristics. This chapter describes the current trends in commercial seaweed production and the potential technological advances in production methods and genetic selection strategies, which can be applied to raise the productivity of seaweed farms. Molecular markers have become increasingly relevant to the selection of a diverse range of wild varieties for domestication, and this augurs well for strain identification. The development of high-density linkage maps based on molecular markers offers an avenue for the implementation of molecular breeding strategies based on quantitative trait loci (QTLs). Concurrently, productivity of existing varieties can be enhanced by the analysis of exogenous factors known to affect the growth and survival of tissue-cultured seedlings. The application of photobioreactors for tissue culture is another important development, which will be digressed upon. In addition to this, quality control which focuses on the comparison of chemical and physical qualities of the tissue-cultured and conventional cultivated seaweeds will become increasingly relevant to the development of industry standards for sustainable seaweed production to fulfill the increasing demands of seaweed-related industries.
Part of the book: Algae