The business started out of a single room in Louis’ home, where he sold one type of wild-harvested seaweed to one customer. Recognizing that diversity was needed to grow the business, he worked tirelessly throughout the first year with the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) to obtain seaweed harvesting leases in Yarmouth and Charlesville in Nova Scotia and Miminegash in Prince Edward Island.
Early customers received a personal guarantee from Louis himself who attested to the quality of the seaweed and the environmental precautions taken during the harvest. Though margins were low in the early years, our reputation for quality grew and Louis was able to expand our export business.
Around the same time, Louis’ son Jean-Paul Deveau was building his own experience that would later transform and augment the potential of Acadian Seaplants. After graduating with a Bachelor’s degree in engineering, he took a sales job with Imperial Oil on the encouragement of his father, gaining a love for communication and negotiation along the way.
With the right foundation, we were ready to grow the quality and scope of our solutions for the future. We recognized that our business depended on a firm scientific understanding of seaweed resources, their ecosystems and the untapped benefits they offered. Moreover, we saw an opportunity to bring our premium products to additional international markets and building a local presence in coastal communities overseas.
By hiring our first scientist in 1995, we began our journey to become a model for international marine resource sustainability, guided by Dr. Raul Ugarte’s research and seaweed management programs. Early in his tenure with Acadian Seaplants, Dr. Ugarte developed an extensive stock assessment and management program, proving our ability to harvest in eco-conscious ways that preserved the resource and mitigated damage to ecosystems along the 3,000 km of shorelines we were licensed by governments to manage in Canada.
As we studied the effects of harvesting on this renewable marine resource, we also began to examine the ways seaweed could have a positive effect on people. We assembled a world-class team of researchers who used our state-of-the-art research facility to discover new and innovative applications for seaweed’s bioactive compounds. Through the work of our R&D team, the world gained a greater understanding of seaweed’s positive influence on plant growth, performance and abiotic stress resistance.
For almost 40 years, Acadian Seaplants has grown and evolved with the times. We’ve won awards for our innovation, our management and our value as an exporter. We’ve taken lessons learned from global food chain brands and applied their techniques and quality-assurance practices to our business, elevating our performance. And we’ve balanced our roots with an adaptable vision of the future.
Though we have uncovered many of the mysteries hidden within our coastal seaweed, we are still exploring the vast potential of Ascophyllum nodosum and other seaweeds, as we are driven to find other viable solutions that enrich the health and hardiness of plants, animals and people.
How can Acadian Seaplants benefit you?