Seaquoia's Call To Action
"I believe the ocean contains the answers to health, happiness, and prosperity for all life on Earth. Kelp, seaweeds, and algae are superfoods of the sea. Through education and research on their roles as feed, fertilizer, and fuel, these plants have the ability to be the catalyst of change on a global scale. Our Mission is sharing the knowledge of the amazing resource of Kelp and seaweeds in California and creating products that are beneficial for humans, livestock, and for agriculture."
-Ian O'Hollaren, Founder
My passion and love for the ocean runs deep. Growing up at Solimar Beach, a small coastal community north of Ventura, California was the beginning of a blessed life. With the Pacific Ocean literally in my front yard, a love and respect for the sea was instilled in me. Ocean activities, especially surfing, became a part of everyday life. The journey started when I ventured out to Big Island, Hawaii, where I began an apprenticeship studying permaculture, aquaponics, vermicomposting, and animal husbandry at Olomana Gardens. Thereafter, I was accepted to the University of Hawaii at Hilo where I graduated with a degree in Tropical Horticulture. For 6 years my life revolved around creating a sustainable life on my 'off the grid’ homestead, growing food, and sustainably harvesting plants and animals from the land and the sea. I quickly learned that Mother Nature provides everything for us if we only take what we need, give back, and understand the impact we have on our environment.
My love for plants, terrestrial and aquatic, soon became interwoven, and I became interested which seaweeds grew along Hawaii’s shores, which ones tasted the best, and how I could replenish soils and fertilize plants with local seaweeds. Seaweed, known as ‘Limu’ in the Hawaiian language, is a staple food in Hawaiian culture, and naturally my mind drifted back to my homeland of California, curious of the wild seaweeds that grew along the shore and under the surface. I asked myself how my love for the ocean and my education in Hawaii could sustain a lifestyle I want to live, while at the same time having a positive impact on the world. Creating a local California Kelp fertilizer and exploring edible seaweeds in California was my motivation for moving home.
I began exploring the central and northern coasts of California, educating myself and identifying various species of seaweeds, their life cycles, and how to sustainably harvest them. A year and a half later, after living in Humboldt, Big Sur, and now settling in Santa Cruz, I'm happy to say I've created a business where I get to spend everyday at the ocean and harvest the highest quality seaweeds for people to eat and nourish their bodies. I also produce a CDFA and OMRI certified California Kelp Liquid Microbial Food Source to nourish soils and microbes and supply local farms. The benefits of seaweeds for the human body, for animal consumption, fuel, and in agriculture are immense, and my goal is to share and educate people on how to incorporate seaweeds into everyday life.