EIT Food


Partners: University of Helsinki, University of Reading, Valio, Waitrose.

Research Fund: EIT Food

Started: 2020


Ásta Heiðrún E. Pétursdóttir

Director of Division / Public Health and Food Safety

Harnessing Seaweed to Produce Iodine-fortified organic milk

The project aims to identify and optimise the use of a sustainable seaweed supplement, that is suitable for use in organic dairy cow diets, to produce iodine-enriched organic milk.

Iodine deficiency is the greatest single cause of preventable brain damage, and can result in impaired intellectual ability and reduced school/work performance. Milk is the main source of iodine in human diets, and additional iodine can be provided by iodised salt. However, organic milk tends to have low contents of iodine, while organic salt is not iodised. Increasing organic milk iodine contents can increase consumers’ iodine intake.

A series of dairy cow feeding trials, to test different seaweeds, will be undertaken and samples of feed and milk collected and analysed. The results will be used to identify suitable seaweeds for dairy cow diets, for the production of iodine-enriched milk.