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Master of Environmental Science and Management: Eco-Entrepreneurship Project
(2021)

Eco-Entrepreneurship: Unicado

Orange roe of a sea urchin.

Group Members: Wes Newbury, Waldo Felix, Max Diamond, Qusai Bhaijeewala

Faculty Advisors: Emily Cotter, Darcy Bradley

uni-cado.com | gp-unicado@bren.ucsb.edu

Description

The population of purple urchins along the California coast has increased by over 10,000% in 5 years. The surge in urchins has led to the elimination of over 90% of northern California’s kelp habitat. Unicado harvests urchins from barrens that pose an immediate threat to adjacent kelp habitat, innovating new ways to bring purple urchins to market.

Unicado is collaborating with local food vendors to develop an effective urchin feed, developing uni products that compliment American cuisine, and developing strategies to measure the impact of sea urchin removal on kelp ecosystem recovery.