Aller Aqua Norway has received NOK 10 million (USD 968,000) from the Research Council of Norway to develop fish feed based on new raw materials.
The funding support will be used to test grass protein as an admixture in salmon feed. The three-year project, in collaboration with the Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU), has the potential to move the knowledge front within new, sustainable raw material sources that are easy to grow in Norway. Aller Aqua Norway aims to confirm that green protein extracted from Norwegian meadow plants provides at least as good performance, fish welfare and product quality as soybean meal.
Aller Aqua recently finished feeding trials in rainbow trout with grass protein concentrate, produced by the Danish company BioRefine, with positive results. Grass protein can be extracted from various sources, such as grass and clover. The production of meadow protein by biorefining has a significant potential to contribute to increased local and regional value creation, increased self-sufficiency, and a more sustainable development of the farming industry.
“The new feed concept could mean that tomorrow's farming production will be an essential contribution to the green shift. This project will first and foremost aim to demonstrate that such feed is beneficial to salmon, something that has not been tested at this intensive research level before,” the company said.
“We want to show that such a measure is more environmentally friendly than the current import of soybean meal, but it is also realistic to produce such valuable meadow crops without affecting agriculture's needs,” the company concluded.