BioMar reaches 1 million tonnes of salmon feed with microalgae
This month, BioMar hit a major sustainability milestone with the adoption of microalgae omega 3s into feed diets. This has been achieved through the help of value chain collaborations where all players, from the raw material suppliers to the retailers, have equally shared the additional costs. Marine ingredients are a finite resource, and by including microalgae in aquaculture diets, we can help stabilise the pressure on fish stocks.
“By including microalgae in aquaculture feed diets, we can bypass the wild fish stocks and go straight to the original source of essential omega 3s. This helps to relieve pressure on our oceans while ensuring that the fish are getting the optimal nutrition required”, said Vidar Gundersen, Global Sustainability Director, BioMar Group.
The innovation process began back in 2013 with the first microalgae oil, AlgaPrime, in commercial salmon feeds realised in 2016. The first mover was Kvarøy Fiskeoppdrett, in a value chain collaboration with BioMar towards Whole Foods, where the additional innovation costs were spread equally across the partners. Not long after, Lerøy adopted microalgae in all their salmon diets. Lerøy's substantial feed volume helped AlgaPrime achieve commercial viability. Today, microalgae oil is a common ingredient in BioMar salmon feeds.
“To bring something this novel to market required the support from the entire value chain. We found this among several salmon farmers and retailers that were willing to take a chance on microalgae and today’s success is owed to them all. Also, to the numerous people in BioMar production sites that found solutions to some challenging technical issues that we experienced over the years”, said Paddy Campbell, VP Salmon Division, BioMar Group.
Microalgae is one of several novel ingredients in the BioMar innovation pipeline. With limited planetary resources, the need to decouple aquaculture feed supply chains from directly competing with food for human consumption will increase. BioMar recently announced an ambitious target of 50% circular and/or restorative ingredients in their aquaculture feed diets by 2030.
BioMar continues innovation towards securing raw material flexibility and low impact feed solutions with several trials underway at various BioMar Aquaculture Technology Centres. These trials continue to deliver valuable insights that will help drive the aquaculture industry even further towards a more sustainable future.