© Parks Canada / L. Gagnon
© Parks Canada / L. Falardeau
You are in contact with products from the sea more often than you think, even if you are physically far away from the ocean!
Of course, that is obvious for some products, such as the crabs, lobsters, salmon, mussels, sardines and the sushi we eat… But did you know that ice cream, shampoo, beauty products, paint and chewing gum all contain substances extracted from the sea?
Many of these products contain derivatives from sea algae. They are called agar (or agar-agar), carrageenans (or carrageenins), alginate (or also: alginic acid, sodium alginate, calcium, magnesium and other), fucoïne, mannitol, laminarin, laminin, etc.
If you have unsweetened chewing gum, look at the ingredients list: you may find mannitol. Mannitol is used as a sweetener. It has 70% of the sweetening power of ordinary sugar. Mannitol is found in many products with low sugar content and in some products made for diabetics.
Carrageenans (or carrageenins) are extracted from red algae and are used as a thickening agent within the food industry. Carrageenan is used in most dairy desserts (different dessert creams, yoghurt, flan, ice cream, etc.)
Here is a beautiful way to celebrate the World’s Oceans Day on June 8: have a marine treasure hunt in your own house! Happy hunting!