Fears have been raised over new plans to harvest wild kelp on an industrial scale in seas off Scotland’s west coast. The proposal, by Ayr-based firm Marine Biopolymers, would eventually see more than 30,000 tonnes of the seaweed gathered each year by specially adapted boats. The harvesting method involves large toothed devices being trawled through kelp beds, removing entire plants over a certain size. Seaweed has a number of uses, from pharmaceuticals to food, and the market for it is burgeoning.

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