I N C O R P O R AT I N G f I s h fA R m I N G T e C h N O l O G y

January | February 2013 EXPERT TOPIC - ARCTIC CHAR

International Aquafeed is published six times a year by Perendale Publishers Ltd of the United Kingdom. All data is published in good faith, based on information received, and while every care is taken to prevent inaccuracies, the publishers accept no liability for any errors or omissions or for the consequences of action taken on the basis of information published. ©Copyright 2013 Perendale Publishers Ltd. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any form or by any means without prior permission of the copyright owner. Printed by Perendale Publishers Ltd. ISSN: 1464-0058

The International magazine for the aquaculture feed industry


Image courtesy of ©Oddmund Goete


Welcome to Expert Topic. Each issue will take an in-depth look at a particular species and how its feed is managed.

50 | InternatIonal AquAFeed | January-February 2013



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rctic char (Salvelinus alpinus) is the most common and widespread salmonid fish in Iceland. Aquaculture of the species began in the early 1900s with attempts to fertilise and hatch eggs. However, the first endeavor to feed Arctic char did not come until 1961 with the development of small-scale growing facilities. In the 1980s, researchers discovered that low optimum temperature requirements, made Arctic char a suitable candidate for farming in Iceland’s cold waters. The number of farms increased in the 1990s thanks, in part, to a government backed breeding programme initiated in 1992. However, the operation was not profitable and several of the country’s 40 farms went out of business. The country produced 500 tonnes of Arctic char in 1995 which had risen to 3,000 tonnes in 2009. Production decreased between 2004-2006 due to bacterial kidney disease and the prohibition of distribution of eggs and juveniles from some hatcheries. In 2008, the country exported 700 tonnes of whole fresh Arctic char, 20 tonnes of frozen char, approx. 600 tonnes of fresh fillets and about 500 tonnes of frozen fillets. The export value amounted to ISK 1,200 million in 2008. The export value of the species amounted to ISL 1,100 million in 2008. Most



of the Arctic char produced in Iceland is exported to Europe and North America. Today, Iceland is the world’s largest producer of Arctic char with more than 50 percent of the total population. There are around 15 land-based Arctic char farms in Iceland and one sea cage farm in the lagoon Lon in Kelduhverfi on the northeast coast. Production is mainly in land-based farms using ground water, with smaller farms using geothermal water to reach

optimal growth temperature. Larger operations use high-quality brackish water pumped directly from onsite drill holes. This method has the advantage of natural filtering the water through layers of lava. More information: http://lf.is/english.htm

January-February 2013 | InternatIonal AquAFeed | 51

in experimental feeds.

The effect of SDP in salmon was evalu-

tions, salmon fed SDP6 had the most homo-

Aqua News

Natural Offshore mariculture industry ingredients for aqua feed looks to high seas opportunities
• Pro-Bind Plus a nutritional, gelatin

ean pH missions shellfish n, USA. armers, and the

ions of or the e techclimate ting to mate have

he offshore aquaculture to encourage these developindustr y has requested ments.” The conference heard keynote that United Nations’ FAO conduct an assessment of the presentations from Alessandro access and operational frame- Lovatelli, FAO Aquaculture Officer; works for open ocean maricul- Paul Holthus of World Ocean ture in the High Seas, and make Council; and Harald Rosenthal who recommendations as to how to had Chaired the Bremerhaven better encourage work towards Conference. Each spoke of the mariculture in waters beyond any opportunity and the imperative for In the next 30 years statement permanent move to the US to aquaculture’s rights and responsibilone nation’s EEZs. A Allison p r e d ithis effect was drafted e e d take up a professorship at the to c t s t r e m e n d o u s f at The ities to be better defined in ABNJ. advances including “designer Univer sity of Washington in Offshore Mariculture Conference, Mr Holthus described how many feeds that Izmir, Turkey, over three September 2013. international conventions and agreeheld in will add the desired nutrients for the people who ments h a n g e , b e i t per sonal, days from October 17-19, 2012 W i t h c regarding ABNJ are either need them, similar to what p ralready established,o c i a l , e n v i and the Turkish government o f e s s i o n a l , s or are under disn m e n a l , l o c a l real consideris offered to formally convey the r ocussion, twithout any o r g l o b a l already happening in the fi ration o n the e a g e n d for this is m ly of t h potential a, aquaculpoultr y industr y”. request to FAO. I n The statement adopted sat g o nture, land with minimal consultation a d d i t i o n t o d i s c u s i n the e p e n a r y s p e a ker who is changes in the aquaculture, the n o t a f r a i d t o s h a k e t h i n g s conclusion of the conference drew with industry. show marks a personal change u p. The conference was officially from a number of preceding declawww.was.org for Allison who will make a rations – including the 2010 Global opened by Dr Durali Kocak, the Conference on Aquaculture, the Phuket Consensus of 2010, and the Colombo Declaration of 2011, all of which have emphasised the critical role for aquaculture in feeding the world, stimulating economic development, providing employment and reducing existing negative impacts on the marine environment. Most recently, the Bremerhaven Declaration of 2012 spoke specifically of the need for increased research, development, investment and policy frameworks for open ocean aquaculture.


ulture and offshore energy projects advances in net pens and service pelleted (shrimp) feed. such as wind farms, and the prospects vessels for exposed Norwegian Improvement and need for macroalgae protein a fish salmon farm sites were presented • Hydrolyzed feather culture in meal alterby nature offshore locations. for carnivorous fishby Finn Willumsen of AquaCulture native, especially species. On the second day of the con- Engineering AS, and Mats Heide of • Muco-Pro® high contents of natural proteins, ference, a number of presen- SINTEF Fisheries and Aquaculture, amino acids and peptides. tations highlighted engineering respectively. On improvements to offshore net pen binder. the final day, conference • Gelko a spraydried attractant and systems, including dramatic video attendees were give a first-hand look • Blood meal and Hemoglobin Powder high protein content footage of sharks trying in vain to at the booming Turkish aquaculture and good digestibility, for better feed industry, as break through Dyneema’s Pred-X, conversion. they were hosted on a and AKVA’s Econet / Kikkonet, tour of fish processing facilities; a boat along with data demonstrating trip out to exposed farm sites for the antifouling properties of brass seabass, seabream and tuna; and a walk-through of marine fish hatchery alloy meshes Visit also included reviews of facilities in the Izmir area. The day our booth (Y21) The dates and venue for the 2014 new developments in single-point at the Aquatic during mooring systems for self-submerging Offshore Mariculture Conference the VIV Asia in Bangkok surface pens and for shrimp culture will be released shortly. March 13-15 in Aquapods, tension leg cages and info@sonac.biz testing of more robust surface pens More InforMatIon:

based pellet binder, especially for

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gest the y of ents pins as lots vate ke it ould nerand eeds ment vela bit em-

and unanchored ‘drifter cages’. New Director-General of Fisheries January-February 2013 | InternatIonal AquAFeed | 19 and Aquaculture at the Turkish Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Livestock, who described how the Turkish government had prioritised aquaculture development. The industry in Turkey is expanding at a phenomenal rate, as it indeed must, to meet the growing demand, but care is being taken to ensure that such growth is within the sea’s ecological limits, he said. O t h e r p r e s e n t a t i o n s explored a range of planning Deeper, and further offshore and management tools that are “There is growing interest from being set up around the world the private sector in exploring the to better integrate aquaculpotential for aquaculture in waters ture into coastal planning initithat are increasingly of the highly successful series of developThe tenth deeper, and atives. New species further offshore” says conference ment, provision of seed (fish symposia that have brought together tilapia chairman, biologists, culturists and other stakeholders Neil Anthony Sims, of fingerlings or bivalve spat) who review the latest discoveries in tilapia Kampachi Farms, LLC. “Given that and feed developments for nutrition, physiology, reproductive biology, many nations – such as those in offshore mariculture were also genetics, ecology, improvements in production the Mediterranean – still only reviewed. systems, and other fields Michael Ebeling, exert national authority as far as related to tilapia and of the their use in aquaculture. 12 miles offshore, then there is Wegner Institute in Germany, a looming question about what and Dr Amir Neori of the happens in the ‘Areas Beyond Israeli Oceanographic Institute National Jurisdiction’ (ABNJ). We (together with Gamze Turan of need to start to address this in Ege University) spoke on the http://bit.ly/TXqY9J anticipation of, and in order potential to co-locate aquac-

October 6-10, 2013

January-February 2013 | InternatIonal AquAFeed | 7 January-February 2013 |


Images courtesy of ©Oddmund Goete

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Research into the suitability of Arctic char as a farmed species began in Canada in the late 1970 with the Fisheries and Oceans Canada's Freshwater Institute and the Huntsman Marine Science Laboratory, leading the way. In addition to their low optimum temperature requirements, it was expected that Arctic char could be an alternate species to Rainbow Trout. Farming of Arctic char in Canada has emerged beyond the development stage but production remains small. Farmers have difficulty selecting char that consistently perform well because of its complex genetic makeup. Arctic char are fed nutrient-dense, dry pellets with fishmeal and fish oil making up the majority of the feed. Carotenoids are also added to feeds to help achieve the distinctive red-pink flesh. The fish are raised in land-based systems. Eggs are hatched within specialised hatchery facilities, where the fish remain until they reach approximately 100 grams. Although they take almost a year to reach 100 grams, Arctic char grow quickly during the grow-out phase, reaching market weight of 1-2.5 kg in the next year. More information: www.dfo-mpo.gc.ca/aquaculture http://aquaculture.ca


rctic char are raised on a commercial scale in the Yukon Territory, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia, and Prince Edward Island, Canada.

he cold waters of the rural Northern periphery are well suited to Arctic char aquaculture. Although annual production is small, at around 5,000 tonnes, interest in the species is increasing. Prof Eva Brännäs, professor at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden, explains why, “it is a very popular species for restaurants and consumers with a higher value than salmon and rainbow trout. It has a more ‘arctic and clean’ touch”. Funded by the European Regional Development Fund within the Northern Periphery Programme, Sustainable Aquaculture of Arctic char (Northcharr) is a collaboration between partners in Norway, Sweden and Iceland. Started in 2007, the


Norway, Sweden & Iceland

52 | InternatIonal AquAFeed | January-February 2013


project aimed to explore the development of Arctic char aquaculture in the northern periphery of Europe. Prof Brännäs says, “the programme focused on collecting general information about Arctic char in all of Europe - both wild and farmed char. Northcharr focused on possibilities and limitations of the growing Arctic char farming.” Participants in the project were mainly researchers and stakeholders in established Arctic char projects and have taken part in a pan-European network on Arctic char. Northcharr took a holistic approach to provide stakeholders in the Northern periphery with tools to improve the development of Arctic char production. There was an emphasis on using sustainable feed ingredients and developing welfare criteria for farming and slaughter. The project had three key aims: to identify production potential and bottlenecks; develop solutions to potential problems and to provide the structure to enable growth and development. The production potential stage involved gathering annual information on production, production technology, fish stocks, health status, legislation, production strategies and staff qualifications. Bottlenecks were classified

"The cold waters of the rural Northern periphery are well suited to Arctic char aquaculture. Although annual production is small, at around 5,000 tonnes, interest in the species is increasing"

according to country and technology. This information will be used to coordinate R&D efforts and form the basis for establishing ‘best practice’ protocols for the species. Researchers highlighted five main production issues: egg survival and broodstock, feed composition, feed delivery, environmental impact and water treatment. Each problem was addressed individually and solutions were drawn from previous research into broodstock handling, feeding practice, optimised temperature regimes, slaughtering and environmental impact. For example, to tackle feed composition, a test-feeding schedule for typical farming conditions was performed using different diets. The researchers tested a ‘Baltic loop’. Nutrients were collected from the eutrophic Baltic Sea through mussels, sprat and yeasts or other microorganisms, made into feed and fed to Arctic char farmed in the nutrient depleted water reservoirs in northern Sweden. This

product is an example of the ‘Robin Hood’ model where nutrients are taken from a ‘rich’ area, in this case the Baltic Sea, and used in a ‘poor’ area, in this case Swedish lakes. Results from these small-scale tests found that this feeding methods works as well as control diets. Prof Brännäs points out that the study backs up the idea that the use and reuse of protein sources and nutrients has a positive impact on ecological footprint, restores balance in aquatic ecosystem and flow of nutrients that can compete with present commercial diets in growth performance and price. In terms of future development, organisers will create a network of investors, representatives of local communities and aquaculture experts. It is hoped this pool of shared knowledge will contribute to the establishment of new companies. More information: www.northcharr.eu

January-February 2013 | InternatIonal AquAFeed | 53

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