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Australia Biotech

CSIRO Scientists' Aquaculture Holy Grail: Fish-Free Prawn Food 116

Posted by timothy
from the sweet-sweet-prawn dept.
An anonymous reader writes "A team of CSIRO scientists has discovered the holy grail of aquaculture by developing the world's first fish-free prawn food: Novaq. According to the article there is intense global interest in Novaq because it solves one of the farmed prawn industry's biggest problems — its reliance on wild fisheries as a core ingredient in prawn food. The Novaq formula is a closely guarded secret, but it is known that the product is based on microscopic marine organisms. Not only will the new feed introduce greater sustainability into a growth industry but prawns fed on the new diet grow 40% faster and are healthier and more robust."
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CSIRO Scientists' Aquaculture Holy Grail: Fish-Free Prawn Food

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  • by hey! (33014) on Saturday April 12, 2014 @12:45AM (#46731983) Homepage Journal

    We think of fish is heart healthy, but fin fish don't produce omega-3 fatty acids; they bioaccumulate Omega 3s produced by the algae at the bottom of the food chain. Farm-raised fin fish may or may not have a healthy fat profile based on their diet. Grass fed beef has a healthier fat profile than grain fed beef, as well as containing useful phyotchemical (chemicals from plants) like carotenoids. Same goes for pork; lard from pasture raised pigs is relatively high in mono- and poly-unsaturated fats.

    The pattern seems to be that the best thing to feed an animal is something that approximates that species' natural food in the wild. So I'm skeptical of a secret, proprietary, industrially produced feed. It's not necessarily a bad thing, particularly if it's just a matter of skipping a few trophic levels (i.e., feeding the animal something prepared from stuff that's lower on its natural prey's food chain). Aquaculture needs something like that. The world's population demands more seafood than can be wild caught. But I'm not enthusiastic about buying meat from animals raised on mystery food.

  • by sjwt (161428) on Saturday April 12, 2014 @03:02AM (#46732297)

    Except the CSIRO dose the actual development, its not suing ppl for having rounded corners, monetizing your invention that new is what the patent system is for

  • Re:Not very secret (Score:4, Insightful)

    by ColdWetDog (752185) on Saturday April 12, 2014 @12:54PM (#46734587) Homepage

    So, instead of harvesting wild fish to feed the farmed fish, we harvest the wild plankton that feed the wild fish that we don't want to kill.

    Yes, you eliminate the middleman (middlefish?) but you are farming just the same. Ecologically, you are stomping on the food chain at a lower level which can cause even bigger issues. Lots and lots of things in the ocean (including the ocean bottom itself) feed on plankton.

    Whatcouldpossiblygowrong?

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