The Arkhangelsk Seaweed Factory is the largest enterprise in the North West of Russia with rich and original history related to the development of unique marine resources.
The reference point for the establishment of seaweed production can be considered the First World War, when a special need for industrial volumes of domestic crystalline iodine arose, to make it possible to treat wounded and seriously ill people.
In 1915, by the decision of the government, the collection and processing of kelp and fucus began on the White Sea. This became possible thanks to the chemistry and organic chemistry professor – Vyacheslav Tishchenko, who suggested the technology of obtaining iodine from seaweed to Prince Alexander of Oldenburg, who was the medical block leader at the front lines and behind enemy lines.
Three years later, in January of 1918, the first Russian factory producing iodine from seaweed was built in Arkhangelsk, and in 1930, an iodine factory on the Zhizhgin Island. Therefore, harvesting and processing of seaweed had a fresh start in development.
However, the process did not go without interruptions. Unfortunately, the scientific developments of our fellow countrymen were interrupted by the Second World War: more than 130 people from the factories in the capital of the Pomorye region and on the island of Zhizhgin left for the front lines, and the factories had to completely change their specialization, for example, starting to grind grain into flour, or process and turn spare parts for agricultural machines.