Neil Sims' Kampachi Farms has been awarded a grant to investigate alternative protein sources and alternative high-value species for expansion of domestic U.S. marine fish aquaculture.
The grant, worth $210,000, is one of five awarded to Hawai'i by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
The project incorporates two lines of inquiry into more sustainable aquaculture practices: sustainable diets, and alternative high-value species for culture.
The feeds component of this work examines novel sustainable protein sources as substitutes for fishmeal in the diets of Seriola rivoliana (kampachi), a high quality sashimi-grade, carnivorous marine finfish grown in Hawaii.
The protein products of interest are a defatted algal biomass (a byproduct of biofuel production); and a Single Cell Protein (SCP) made using food processing waste. These products will be substituted for fish meal at increasing rates (0%-30% substitution) and the effect of this on growth rate and food conversion ratio will be ascertained. Products that offer promising results (similar or better growth rate and equal or lesser cost when compared to the commercial diet used to raise kampachi) will be used to grow fish to a marketable size for a consumer taste test.
The alternative species component of this work will refine spawning and aquaculture grow-out methods for high-value grouper species, and extend this work towards developing a restocking program for the Giant Grouper (Epinephelus lanceolatus), using roi (Cephalopholis argus) as a proxy species in lieu of Giant Grouper spawns. Results of these trials will be shared with the industry through publications and presentations at industry related conferences.