ATEC Team Spotlight

The ATEC team is comprised of seventeen members based throughout the United States who collectively have more than 100 years in algal-based education, research, and commercial experience. Let’s get to know them!

First up? Dr. Jake Nalley.

Jake is the Director of Agronomy at Qualitas Health, a Texas-based nutrition and supplements company. He manages the health and well-being of Nannochloropsis across two locations in Texas and New Mexico, focusing on driving on-spec annual production. He is also a Board Member of The Algae Foundation, helping lead the Algae Academy, ATEC’s K-12 STEM Initiative which has educated over 25,000 K-12 students nationwide. Jake completed his dual PhD in Integrative Biology and Ecology, Evolutionary Biology, and Behavior at Michigan State University in 2016 and has a deep interest in science education and dissemination. 

Acres of saltwater pools in the desert are growing an algae food revolution

High in protein and low in carbon footprint, algae is a breakthrough for feeding the world in a changing climate

“Algae? But… isn’t that gross?” That’s what Rebecca White commonly hears from surprised people at her booth at trade shows, after the unsuspecting visitors find out the snack bar they just ate, and actually really liked, contains algae.

White is a research scientist at iWi, a nutrition company that runs one of the largest algae farms. She isn’t offering snacks filled with algae just to show people that the mossy greens can be added to food without making it taste or smell like pond water. The real mission is to discuss algae’s potential as a solution for a much bigger problem: the food security of our planet. 

We will soon be running out of food. The projected population of the world in 2050 will require a 70 percent increase in food production, but we are already stretching our resources with the way we grow food today, a new United Nations report warned yesterday. Land is turning into desert, rising temperatures are cutting crop yields, and soil is becoming lifeless due to overuse. Seventy percent of the world’s available freshwater is used for agriculture and raising livestock. Livestock and the food they consume generate 14 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions from human-related activity, contributing to climate change, more droughts and land erosions. It’s a vicious cycle that experts say we are running out of time to break. “We need a farming revolution,” says Miguel Calatayud, the CEO of iWi. 

Click here to read the full article by Massive Science.

New publication from Co-author and ATEC Grad Jonathan Schwilling

The algal research publication entitled, “Effects of salinity and nitrogen source on growth and lipid production for a wild algal polyculture in produced water media” is now available. Read highlights in this study where a polyculture of microalgae and other prokaryotes were tested in PW at a range of salinities and initial nutrient concentrations.

Read more at: