Friday, February 26, 2016

26/02/2016: The future of fish meal replacement: Cotton Protein
by Tom Wedegaertner, director of agricultural research, Cotton Incorporated

First published in International Aquafeed, January-February 2016 

In the 1985 movie Back to the Future, time travelers visit 2015. By pure coincidence, the date they visited coincided with Aquaculture Europe 2015, giving attendees the opportunity to speculate about what aquaculture will look like in another 30 years. An exciting prediction was made: by 2045, more protein from the cotton plant will be used in aquaculture feeds than that from fishmeal.

The good news is we don’t need a tricked-out DeLorean time machine to take us to the future to confirm that prediction, because the future is right in front of us. The industry’s quest for a sustainable, plant-based protein to meet current and future demands takes us to a present-day cotton field.

Worldwide, the annual cotton crop produces about 10 million metric tons of pure protein. This is equivalent to 16 million metric tons of fishmeal, or four times current fishmeal production.

It’s no secret that at current worldwide growth rates, which currently stand at approximately eight percent annually, the aquaculture industry will soon require fishmeal in volumes far beyond that which the oceans can sustainably provide. The United Nations’ FAO reports that fish populations targeted for fishmeal production could be depleted by 2030.

Cottonseed protein, byproducts of cotton production, are expected to be an excellent and far less costly – financially and environmentally – replacement for fishmeal in aquaculture applications.

Read the full article in International Aquafeed HERE.    

The Aquaculturists
This blog is maintained by The Aquaculturists staff and is supported by the
magazine International Aquafeed which is published by
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