Sustainability & Farming

Our open-ocean kelp farms are the first in the nation and allow you to provide your customers with a safe, local alternative to imported seaweeds.

Your diners can only judge your commitment to health and sustainability through the ingredients you choose. At Ocean Approved, our name is our philosophy. We only employ practices of which the ocean would approve.
— Paul Dobbins, President

Healthy for You, Healthy for the Environment
Having seen the changes to the ocean in our lifetime, and having been part of failed fisheries when we were younger, we are committed to leaving a better legacy for our children.


Imagine a crop that requires no fresh water or arable land to grow. Imagine a local crop with a trusted pedigree traceable to the cold clean waters off the coast of Maine. And one that is cultivated using sustainable mariculture practices?

Farming kelp is healthy for the environment. Like terrestrial plants, kelp relies on photosynthesis to generate energy. Kelp absorbs nitrogen, phosphorus, and carbon dioxide, which are three nutrients we have too much of in our coastal waters.

Healthy for the Working Waterfront
Ocean Approved leverages a resilient working waterfront culture off the coast of Maine. By introducing a new crop to the fishing community, we’re committed to supporting that culture by providing high quality jobs in Maine. Kelp is a winter crop, which provides work to fishermen when it's most needed.

Farming Kelp

We create seed in our nursery using processes developed through our research, and culture the seaweed to maturity on our farms. This ensures the highest quality domestically produced seaweed available to the market. We start our process of creating seed in September. We out plant the seed from October - December and begin harvesting in March. To download a PDF of our Kelp Farming Manual click here.