Our fish food needs to provide them enough energy to live and thrive and must also supply all the nutrients (proteins, fats, vitamins and minerals) to grow.
We know exactly what our fish have been fed, which means that when you purchase Huon Salmon and Huon Ocean Trout you know it has received safe, sustainable, traceable feed.
Huon has the only ongoing dedicated research trial farm program in Australia into salmon feed. We work in close partnership with our feed suppliers to understand and continually improve our feeds so they provide a balanced, healthy and tasty diet for our fish in the unique Tasmanian environment.
The diet has to:
- provide the fish with enough energy to live and thrive
- supply all the nutrients (proteins, fats, vitamins and minerals)
- be sustainable.
After many years of research we understand that the relative amounts and balance of each nutrient needs respond to the environmental conditions. This generates a specification for our diets for each stage of the salmon’s growth, which our feed suppliers manufacture. There is some flexibility over which ingredients go into the recipe to deliver that specified feed, but all ingredients must go through rigorous quality checks before they can be used.
Our salmon feed is made up of a range of ingredients including:
- Fish meal and fish oil, which is sourced from certified wild fisheries, and the off-cuts from other fish species. Salmon farmers world-wide have been working on a fish oil and fish meal substitute for many years and we have reduced our use to between 15-18%. There are now diets that require no fishmeal, and instead use oils produced from algae which provides the Omega-3s in the salmon which is essential for a healthy diet. The majority of fish meal in the diets in future will most likely come from off-cuts that would otherwise be disposed of. Moreover some 30% of fish meal globally is made from trimmings not wild catch. The fish that makes up fish meal are typically small, bony pelagic fish that aren’t generally used for human consumption.
- Vegetable ingredients such as wheat, soya derivatives, corn gluten and vegetable oils.
- Vitamins and minerals and astaxanthin. Astaxanthin is a powerful antioxidant that salmon need for healthy muscle growth and egg production and which also provides the salmon the signature orange hue to the flesh.
- Meat and chicken meal, blood meal, and poultry oil. By using land-animal by-products in our feed, we are helping to utilise ‘waste’ from other farming, which improves the sustainability of both land-based and sea-based aquaculture farming production.
Equally as important as what is in our feed, is what we leave out!
Our feed does not contain ingredients of genetically modified (transgenic) origin. And we never feed our fish growth hormones or growth promoters. Nor does it contain pork or pork by-products.
Find out more about our actions to reduce antibiotic use in our fish.