“Aquaculture, an expanding, protein-hungry industry, needs to develop alternate feed sources, according to (Jesse) Trushenski. The growing scarcity of wild anchovies and sardines increases the costs of marine-based fish meal and impacts ocean ecosystems. Soybean meal is a proven, renewable alternative, but using just soybean meal in place of fish meal affects the growth and health of some carnivorous species.‘Previous SIU research established Asian carp meal as equal to or better than marine-based fish meal in aquaculture diets, and helped set standards for using soybean meal in aquaculture,’ Trushenski explains. ‘We took our understanding of protein for carnivorous fish feed a step further by demonstrating synergies between local protein sources – soybeans and invasive fish.’The research trial formulations used 25 percent soybean meal and 18 percent Asian carp meal, proteins readily available in the Midwest. A new carp rendering plant in Grafton, Ill., will boost availability of Asian carp meal, and demonstrates the ripple effect this solution can have on rural economies.”
*Dr. Trushenski is an associate professor at Southern Illinois University. IISG has funded some of her previous research efforts looking into fish meal options.