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Veramaris becomes first ASC-MSC certified microalgae for feed

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Veramaris® became the first microalgae oil producer for feed to achieve certification to the joint ASC-MSC Seaweed (Algae) Standard. The company, that produces EPA and DHA omega-3 algae oil for use in the aquaculture feed industry, is the first American producer to achieve the ASC-MSC certification.

Veramaris’ certified sustainable facility, which is entirely land-based, adds an estimated 45% to the global supply of MSC certified EPA and DHA omega-3 and covers approximately 15% of the global requirement for EPA and DHA in farmed salmon feeds.

According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), aquaculture is instrumental for meeting the increasing global demand for nutritional food while restoring the health of our oceans. To meet this growing demand sustainably, fish farms need responsibly-sourced fish feed - an ASC-certification requirement. This feed must contain the two key omega-3 fatty acids, EPA and DHA, which are vital for animal and human health and mostly come from wild-capture fish. One ton of Veramaris algae oil provides as much EPA and DHA as from 60 tons of forage fish.

“Congratulations to Veramaris on becoming the first producers of algae-derived omega-3 to be certified against the ASC-MSC Seaweed Standard. This certification confirms that the operation minimizes the impacts on the environment, with good labor conditions and positive impacts for the community,” said Patricia Bianchi, ASC-MSC Seaweed account manager. “Our oceans are under great pressure to supply fish both for direct human consumption and for feed in the aquaculture industry. We are hopeful that the sustainable and responsible production of omega-3 from algae will help relieve some of this pressure on wild stocks and reduce the risk of overfishing.” 

Karim Kurmaly, Veramaris CEO said that “this achievement is an imperative milestone on our journey to expand the world’s access to sustainable EPA and DHA omega-3. We are committed to working with partners along the value chain to bring transparent and sustainable solutions to the industry that result in healthy fish, healthy food and healthy oceans for generations to come. I extend my gratitude to the global Veramaris team that has worked very hard to bring us to where we are today with this great achievement.”

Gaining the ASC-MSC certification required a rigorous audit process against dozens of requirements for good management practices. An in-depth audit over many days was carried out by an independent company, SAI Global that checked records, took measurements and interviewed operators to assess whether the facility met every requirement in the standard. These requirements include responsible energy use, minimal impacts on biodiversity, fair treatment and pay for all staff and involves a public consultation period.

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