Frequently Asked Questions 

Is Salmon Dyed?

Salmon, whether wild or farmed, receive their signature flesh colour from their food.

Is Salmon Dyed?

Is Salmon Dyed?

Salmon, whether wild or farmed, receive their signature flesh colour from their food. This is a consequence of their need to store an antioxidant called Astaxanthin. Astaxanthin is known as carotenoid, which are the yellow, orange and red pigments produced by plants. These are the same antioxidants that give flamingo’s their signature pink colour and there are over 600 different types. In the wild, astaxanthin is produced by algae and makes its way up the food chain, eventually reaching salmon when they hunt creatures such as krill’s. Farmed salmon need this same antioxidant, so we add it to their diet. It’s also added to the diets of other fish, like yellowtail kingfish, who use it as well but don’t store it in their muscles.

Only around 10% of Astaxanthin in salmon feed is stored by the fish, while the remaining 90% is used as an antioxidant for the salmon’s health. Astaxanthin is a crucial part of a salmon’s diet, helping support muscle growth and boost their immune system. Astaxanthin is perfectly safe for both salmon and humans. Astaxanthin has been shown to have numerous health benefits for humans and is up to 500x more effective as an antioxidant than Vitamin E. For this reason, it is sold as a human health supplement.

Health Benefits of Astaxanthin