Beginning next month, Lerøy’s salmon above 1 kg will be farmed with AlgaPrime DHA. One ton of AlgaPrime, says the manufacturer, is the equivalent of saving up to 40 tons of wild-caught fish on a DHA basis.

Andrew Hoyle writes in fishfarmingexpert.com that the Lerøy Seafood Group has linked up with BioMar to use feed partly derived from the microalgae ingredient AlgaPrime DHA. Beginning next month, Lerøy’s salmon above 1 kg will be farmed with feed formulated with a sustainable, omega-3-rich whole algae ingredient developed by biotechnology group TerraVia in partnership with agribusiness Bunge.

“For the end-consumer this change means that we will be able to keep the high level of healthy omega-3 in Lerøy Salmon,” said Henning Beltestad, Lerøy Seafood Group’s chief executive. “We know there will be a lack of fish oil in the future and that we have to find alternatives, as a feed ingredient, if we want to keep the high level of healthy omega-3 that we have in the salmon today. With the use of feed formulated with microalgae we are certain to maintain the high level for many years to come.”

“With the use of feed formulated with microalgae we are certain to maintain the high level of healthy omega-3 for many years to come,” said Henning Beltestad, CEO of Lerøy Seafood Group. Image: Therese Soltveit.

“We have been able to take the volume of salmon being fed in a more sustainable way to a significant level within a short time frame,” he added. “BioMar has been at the forefront of looking out for new opportunities within sustainable ingredients, and we need new raw materials to be able to follow the demand for healthy seafood. To us it is extremely important that the entire value chain takes responsibility in developing an even more sustainable aquaculture.”

AlgaPrime DHA is a native, whole algae ingredient produced at the joint venture SB Renewable Oils’ facility located in Orindiúva, in the São Paolo state of Brazil. It is based on an algae strain discovered in the mangrove swamps of Florida. Although found in the marine environment, the algae is grown on land in contained fermentation tanks.

To make AlgaPrime DHA, plant sugar and other nutrients are fed to the algae and they grow full of oil rich in docosohexenoic acid (DHA), a long-chain omega-3 fatty acid. Then, the algae are removed from the tanks and dried. The result is a whole algae ingredient, which contains 30 per cent DHA, and is produced in a matter of days. One ton of AlgaPrime DHA, according to the manufacturers, is the equivalent of saving up to 40 tons of wild caught fish on a DHA basis.

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