New Seasons’ partnership with OSU yields first commercialized Oregon seaweed product

New Seasons’ partnership with OSU yields first commercialized Oregon seaweed product

The retailer's Partner Label program features products developed by others for New Seasons with the local producer’s information clearly identified on the packaging.

Au revoir vinaigrette! New Seasons Market this week introduces Tamari with Dulse Seaweed Dressing & Marinade, the nation’s first commercially available product containing an Oregon-grown red seaweed called “dulse.” The Dulse Seaweed Dressing & Marinade is a joint effort between New Seasons Market, Oregon State University (OSU) and Dulse Foods. Tangy and versatile, the Asian-style dressing and marinade features a strain of nutrient-rich dulse sea vegetable grown at the (OSU) Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport, Ore., and is the result of extensive research and development based on consumer taste testing at the OSU Food Innovation Center.

The dressing is offered under New Seasons’ own “Partner Label” brand and is available beginning Jan. 13 at all New Seasons’ Portland, Ore. and Vancouver, Wash. - area locations with introductory pricing at $3.99 (regularly priced at $4.99). Its recipe highlights the oceanic and briny qualities of dulse with olive oil and tamari for a delicious umami flavor. New Seasons Market suggests the dulse dressing be enjoyed as a salad dressing, marinade for tofu or chicken, or as a sauce for a vegetable stir fry. Customers can visit any Portland, Ore. and Vancouver, Wash. - area New Seasons location to sample the new product at the Solutions counter near the store entrances on Jan. 13.

“Dulse is sustainable and nutritious, and its cultivation has the potential to revitalize coastal food economies. This is the first of what we hope will be many delicious, innovative products incorporating Oregon-grown dulse,” said Chris Tjersland, New Seasons Market Partner Brand development manager. “Our New Seasons Partner Label program, which brings our customers the best possible food and connects them with local producers, is specifically designed for this kind of collaborative, regional item.”

New Seasons’ Partner Label program—products developed by others for New Seasons with the local producer’s information clearly identified on the product’s packaging—provides regional producers unique opportunities to showcase their craftsmanship and quickly get their product to market. It also offers transparency and quality to shoppers. The latest addition to New Seasons Market’s Partner Label product line, the dressing and marinade is another example of the grocer’s commitment to growing the regional food economy through strong, innovative partnerships.

“We worked with New Seasons on a recipe that features pure olive oil and gluten-free tamari, achieving a great flavor balance and a unique Asian-style flavor,” said Jason Ball, Research Chef at the OSU Food Innovation Center. “Tamari with Dulse Seaweed Dressing & Marinade was a favorite among our consumer testers. Even the less adventurous consumers enjoyed eating dulse dressing on a mixed salad or as a dip for vegetables.”

The Tamari with Dulse Seaweed Dressing & Marinade’s strain of dulse (Palmaria mollis) is farmed by continuously cycling fresh Pacific Ocean water through specially designed tanks at the OSU Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport, Ore. The dulse grows abundantly with minimal inputs, yielding versatile sea vegetables that are up to 16 percent protein by dry weight and rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Already an important food source around the Atlantic Ocean regions, Oregon’s dulse is gaining popularity on menus at several Portland restaurants, and OSU Food Innovation Center is continuing to develop products including chips, ice cream, trail mix and beer using locally grown dulse to enhance the nutrient content and flavors.

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