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Monday, August 15, 2016

15/08/2016: Adding value to aquatic animals and products

By Johan Den Hartog, Managing Director of GMP+ International

In the last decade, the aquaculture industry has grown exponentially; this growth is expected to continue. Consumers appreciate this growth because of the positive connotations that go along with eating fish. 

Johann den Hartog, GMP+
Because of the healthy image of fish and other aquatic produce, it is important to assure the safety of the aquatic animal products. Water quality certainly has an impact, but also the quality of aquafeed. A proper control of the safety of aqua feed can add value to the quality of the aquatic animal products.

Feed safety risks can have a direct influence on the performance of aqua culture and indirectly on the access of (new) markets of aquatic produce worldwide. In this article, we give an overview of possible feed safety risks and the way of controlling them in a transparent way and according international standards. We also make remarks about sustainability aspects of aqua feeds.
  
Feed safety hazards
Practice tells us that feed ingredients can be contaminated with chemical and physical substances, as well as biological agents. It can depend on the ingredients used and the origin and production processes of these ingredients and the aqua feed as such.

Chemical hazards may occur through natural chemicals (such as mycotoxins), industrial and environmental contaminants (like heavy metals, dioxins, and PCB ǯ s) and residues of veterinary drugs, pesticides, and radionuclides. Physical hazards are foreign objects like pieces of glass, metal, plastic, or wood.

Biological hazards are contaminants such as bacteria, viruses, fungi, and parasites. 
In aquaculture, too much contamination could influence the growth performance of the aquatic animals, thus increasing the feed conversion, whilst also inducing disease resistance; which in turn results in biological changes. These are all consequences with an economic impact.

More importantly however, contaminants transferred from feed into the aquatic animal can also have a negative impact on the safety of the aquatic animal products for the consumers and on the health image of it.
It is clear that safe aqua feed is essential for aqua culture, not only for a profitable production of the aquatic animal products, but also for the sake of undisturbed and continued sales into the market; especially export markets.

Moreover the consumers expect a healthy product. To get safe aqua feed, a proper feed safety control by means of an ad equate assurance system is a precondition. If such an assurance system is applied demonstrably, it will add value to the aquatic animal products definitively.

Read the full article 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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