Our upstream processes combine raw material sourcing and separation. After harvesting, we separate the kelp into four distinct fractions, so-called Alginor Starting Materials (ASMs). ASMs are storage-stable intermediates that enter downstream processes for production of our ingredients portfolio.
To ensure full traceability and optimal performance, we have established Hypomar AS whose sole responsibility and purpose is upstream operations.
Today, we source raw material using Hypomar AS’ harvesting vessel, Hypomar Inceptor. Hypomar Inceptor is licensed for commercial harvesting of Laminaria hyperborea and has an estimated annual harvesting capacity of up to 3,000 tonnes wet kelp. The vessel has primarily been used to meet our piloting needs.
In the next few years, we aim to source our raw material using a custom-made vessel, Hypomar Ocean, with an annual target capacity of 10,000 tonnes wet kelp. The vessel is currently being designed and engineered as part of our DACOTA project. In the long-term, we aim to acquire three new custom-made vessels with onboard production, dubbed Hypomar Ultimo. Our aim is for each vessel to have an annual harvesting capacity of 30,000 tonnes wet kelp, to meet the needs of our future full-scale 100,000 tonnes biorefinery.
3D renderings of Hypomar Ultimo.
Alginor Starting Materials
After harvesting, we stabilise the raw material by separating it into the four specific kelp fractions stipe, leaf, epiphytes and hapter. In doing so, we create easy-to-handle starting materials which lay the foundation for our biorefining processes, without using a single drop of formaldehyde to preserve the biomass.
The stipe-based ASM contains high-quality alginates, cellulose, precursors to oligosaccharides and biobased materials, as well as mannitol.
ASM-leaf contains fucoidan, mannuronic alginate, laminarin, polyphenols and carotenoids.
ASM-Epiphytes is made from the other algae that grow on the stipe, and contains savoury compounds and proteins.
ASM-Hapter contains high levels of cellulose and lower levels of alginates.