FDA approves krill products for farmed salmon feeds

Responsible Seafood Advocate

Aker BioMarine clears regulatory hurdle after 10 years

Aker BioMarine announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved its krill-based protein meal products for use in salmonid feeds.

Norway-based Aker BioMarine has announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved its krill-based protein meal products for use in freshwater and marine farmed salmonid feeds.

Aker’s QRILL™ Aqua and QRILL™ High Protein meal contains astaxanthin, a natural source of the pigment that enhances salmon flesh color, and the FDA classifies it as a color additive.

“We have been waiting for this approval for a long time and are very excited to see this come to life,” said Sigve Nordrum, executive VP of animal health and nutrition at Aker BioMarine. “We serve the aquaculture industry across the globe and now we are excited to do the same in North America. For years, feed companies and fish farmers in this region were well aware of the benefits of krill for fish feeds and salmon, therefore they have been demanding these products for their North American operations. We look forward to working with our customers in this market to support the production of high-quality, sustainable and healthy fish.”

Made from Antarctic krill, QRILL Aqua functions as a feeding stimulant leading to increased feed uptake and enhanced growth. Aker says that QRILL Aqua is also proven to improve health, stress tolerance and fillet quality. QRILL High Protein is a protein-rich product used in formulated diets for farmed fish and shrimp, leading to increased feed uptake and enhanced growth.

Will krill fulfill its promise as an aquaculture feed ingredient?

According to Mariana Naum, Ph.D., team lead-strategic communications for the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition at the FDA, the agency amended the color additive regulations to provide for the safe use of Antarctic krill meal on May 10. Antarctic krill meal is composed of the ground and dried tissue of Euphausia superba, with or without the lipid fraction, intended for use in the feed of salmonid fish, to enhance the color of their flesh. “We took this action in response to a color additive petition (CAP) submitted by Aker BioMarine Antarctic AS (Aker BioMarine or petitioner). The final rule became effective on June 10, 2022,” she told the Advocate.

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