Next Christmas your drink of choice might be a seaweed smoothie or cocktail. AgriSea New Zealand is hoping to tempt more New Zealanders to try a seaweed food drink with Research and development general manager Clare Bradley declaring that with the right combination of flavours, seaweed could be a “superpower beverage” because of its high vitamin and mineral content. Flavours such as berry, lemon and ginger will be added. She says the science shows that many seaweeds improve gut health, have anti-viral, anti-inflammatory, anti-diabetic and cardio-protective properties. Agrisea has set up a food-grade facility in Paeroa and completed food safety testing of the proposed beverage for heavy metals, iodine levels and microbial levels. The next phase is a commercial seaweed farm to guarantee a stable source of seaweed supply. That prospects will be helped with $5 million from Government, Auckland Council and a few other backers for a commercial seaweed farm pilot in the Hauraki Gulf and Bay of Plenty.