Fish Oil Alternatives To Farmed Fish Feed May Alleviate Global Seafood Shortage

February 13, 2009 at 8:00 am Leave a comment

Fish oil replacements for farmed fish feeds may help reduce the aquaculture industry’s dependence on wild fisheries for their essential omega-3 requirements. This move may also help overcome existing barriers that impede the industry’s expansion.

A study published in the inaugural issue of Reviews in Aquaculture by Wiley-Blackwell provides a review and discussion of research activities conducted to evaluate alternative lipid sources. It focuses on the effects of fish oil replacement in finfish nutrition on feed quality, fish performance, feed efficiency, lipid metabolism, final eating quality and related economic aspects.

“There is heavy emphasis for aquaculture to meet the global shortage of fish and seafood created by unsustainable fishing practices. However, dietary fish oil is required for the production of omega-3-rich farmed fish and this commodity, in a vicious circle, is at present derived solely from wild fisheries”, said Dr. Giovanni Turchini from the School of Life and Environmental Science, Deakin University, Australia.

Dietary lipids are required by fish as an essential source of omega-3 for regular growth, health, reproduction and bodily functions. At present, aquafeeds use about 90% of the global supply of fish oil as a lipid source. In addition to the economic factors of rising global fish oil prices and limited supplies, the aquaculture industry is under intense pressure from both scientists and environmental groups to find and implement alternatives to fish oil.

The review concludes that about 75% of dietary fish oil can be substituted with alternative lipid sources, such as vegetable oils and animal fats, without significantly affecting growth performance, feed efficiency and intake for almost all finfish species studied. However, as different species responds differently to fish oil diet replacement, further research is required for the realization of eco-friendly and cost effective aquafeeds.

This paper is published in Reviews in Aquaculture (Vol. 1, Issue 1, pg 10-57), and is available free online

About Reviews in Aquaculture

The primary aim of Reviews in Aquaculture is to provide a forum of reviews on developments in aquaculture techniques, policies and planning. The journal will publish fully peer-reviewed review articles, invited or otherwise, on major aspects pertaining to aquaculture, including:

– global, regional and/or national production and market trends

– aquaculture practices and technological developments

– aquaculture- environment interactions

– indigenous and alien species in aquaculture

– the biology and culture of aquaculturally important and emerging species

– utilization of primary and secondary resources in aquaculture

– developments in artificial propagation of individual species and / or groups

– developments in feeds and feeding

– genetics and aquaculture

– health management in aquaculture

– policy developments pertaining to aquaculture

– aquaculture product quality and traceability

– socio-economics of aquaculture and impacts

About Wiley-Blackwell

Wiley-Blackwell was formed in February 2007 as a result of the acquisition of Blackwell Publishing Ltd. by John Wiley & Sons, Inc., and its merger with Wiley’s Scientific, Technical, and Medical business. Together, the companies have created a global publishing business with deep strength in every major academic and professional field. Wiley-Blackwell publishes approximately 1,400 scholarly peer-reviewed journals and an extensive collection of books with global appeal.

About Wiley

Founded in 1807, John Wiley & Sons, Inc. has been a valued source of information and understanding for 200 years, helping people around the world meet their needs and fulfill their aspirations. Since 1901, Wiley and its acquired companies have published the works of more than 350 Nobel laureates in all categories: Literature, Economics, Physiology/Medicine, Chemistry and Peace.

Our core businesses include scientific, technical, medical and scholarly journals, encyclopedias, books, and online products and services; professional/trade publishes books, subscription products, training materials, and online applications and websites; and educational materials for undergraduate and graduate students and lifelong learners. Wiley’s global headquarters are located in Hoboken, New Jersey, with operations in the U.S., Europe, Asia, Canada, and Australia. The Company’s Web site can be accessed at The Company is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbols JWa and JWb.

John Wiley & Sons, Inc.



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