Microalgae stakeholders call European Commission to use algae-based solution in aquafeeds
A group of microalgae producers, including Veramaris and Corbion, submitted a letter to the European Commission proposing binding targets for the replacement of fish-based fish feed with algae-based solutions.
A group of microalgae producers, including Veramaris, Corbion, Necton, Fermentalg, BioSyntex, Archimede Ricerche and the European Algae Biomass Association (EABA), submitted a letter to Carmen Preising, Deputy Head of Cabinet of the European Commissioner for Environment, Oceans and Fisheries expressing their commitment to working with the European Commission on its #EU4Algae initiative.
“In 2018, 19% of global wild capture fish production was used to produce fishmeal and fish oil, mostly derived from small pelagic fish, of which unfortunately only 20% are sustainably sourced. The pressure on marine resources and ecosystems is also confirmed by a recent JRC Science for policy report, which concluded that many fish populations assessed are overfished. These facts show the large tension between the need to feed a growing population in a sustainable way while reducing dependence on marine resources. Fortunately, several algae-based alternatives are commercially available today to offer the same omega-3 fatty acids and reduce the pressure on vulnerable marine ecosystems,” the letter said.
“We strongly believe that out of all policy options mentioned in the impact assessment, the biding targets for the substitution of fish-based fish feed and animal feed with algae-based feed will provide the strongest incentive to drive the necessary change. This is underscored by the European Parliament that recently expressed its concern about the capture of fish with the sole purpose of feeding carnivorous farmed fish. It considers that this fish practice should be phased out and replaced with sustainable alternatives. Setting gradually more ambitious binding targets for this substitution in our view provides the clearest policy signal to microalgae producers and the rest of the market that EU policymakers are serious about this. The microalgae industry could already replace a large portion of fish oil in Europe today and is committed to increasing this significantly over the coming years,” the letter stated.
The letter concludes with a call to a dialogue with the EU institutions and others to drive the change.