Laver, or dried seaweed, is gaining popularity overseas. According to the Korea Customs Service on Tuesday, exports of processed laver rose 14 percent on-year to US$166.94 million between January and October. Prices also jumped 14 percent on-year to $18,117 per ton.
Korea saw double-digit growth in exports of laver for the past ten years. Last year, exports reached $180.02 million, rising 5-fold compared to a decade ago.
The number of exporting countries also doubled from 38 countries in 2004 to 76 this year. In particular, exports to North America grew significantly in the past few years, with those to the U.S. soaring from $20 million in 2010 to $63 million last year.
The rise is attributed to laver’s health benefits, a market insider said. In September, NBC introduced Korean laver as a healthy snack for children, giving it more publicity, he added.
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