Low Phytate Barley Scores High Marks in Vietnamese Fish Feeding Trial

Pangasius fare well on up to 30 percent inclusion rate of low phytate barley
June 12, 2009

Low Phytate Barley Scores High Marks in Vietnamese Fish Feeding Trial

U.S. Grains Council member Idaho Barley Commission donated one container of low phytate barley for feeding trials in Vietnam's vibrant aquaculture industry. The trial lasted six months, and the results released June 11, 2009, show positive benefits of using low phytate barley in Pangasius fish nutrition.

"Four dietary treatments containing different inclusion levels of barley were included in floating Pangasius feed," said Dr. Budi Tangendjaja, USGC consultant in Vietnam.

The newly formulated feed ration was fed to 2,000 Pangasius fish during each treatment, containing different levels (0 percent, 10 percent, 20 percent and 30 percent) of the Idaho barley.

"Diets containing barley were readily consumed by fish," Tangendjaja said.

"There is little effect on the performance when barley inclusion increased from 10 percent to 30 percent in the diets." Kelly Olson, Idaho Barley Commission administrator, said the results of the trial were no surprise.

"These fish trial results are consistent with findings from ongoing collaborative research by Idaho scientists that have been developing grain-based fish diets for Idaho's large aquaculture (trout) industry," she said.

"We are very encouraged to see similar performance from our new low phytate barley in diets formulated for different fish species. We appreciate this opportunity to team up with the U.S. Grains Council and Vietnamese aquaculture farmers."

Another benefit of using low phytate barley is the positive impact on the environment, according to Adel Yusupov, USGC regional director in Southeast Asia. "Low phytate barley offers most of its phosphorus in a digestible form, so this phosphorus largely remains in the fish and out of the water system. This is a huge advantage. The Council concluded the low phytate barley can be fed to Pangasius fish up to 30 percent without any adverse effects on water quality," he said.

"Water pollution caused by highly intensive aquaculture farming in Mekong will demand the use of such new feed ingredients as Idaho's new barley variety.