EN 17399:2020 ‘Algae and algae products - Terms and definitions’ 

Algae are a material that is gaining increasing attention as a sustainable material with a lot of potential: they can make important contribution in food (including nutrients)/feed (including aquaculture and pet food), biofuels, biomaterials and cosmetics/pharmaceuticals, thus they address a variety of services for several sectors of the economy. Furthermore, they do not need fertile or cultivation land to grow, their production has no ‘direct impact’ on food produced on land and land use. For all these reasons combined, the algae sector in the EU has been steadily growing in the past years and is currently moving to upscaling and further commercialisation. But their accelerated deployment necessitates the development and adoption of standards.

To meet the needs of the industry, CEN developed EN 17399:2020 ‘Algae and algae products - Terms and definitions’, the first European standard for algae and algae products. It is a very important first step for the algae sector to grow, develop and professionalise.

In particular, EN 17399 provides clear and standardised terms and definitions for algae and algae products, thus removing any ambiguity or misunderstanding in the sector. The standard not only contributes to improving communication within the sector, but also reach further, as standardized terms and definitions can also form the basis for legislation.

This new standard is a good example of how standards can support and encourage the growth of promising innovations, facilitating their market penetration in the Single Market and beyond.

EN 17399:2020 was developed by CEN/TC ‘454 Algae and algae products’, whose Secretariat is held by NEN, the Netherlands’ National Standardization Board.

For more information, please contact Jennifer OGBONNA