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Insect Protein Comes Up Trumps in Preliminary Trials

MISSISSIPPI - Neptune Industries, has announced extremely positive preliminary results from its stage three trials using Ento-ProteinTM, in farm raised fish.

The studies, under way at Mississippi State University, have shown that the insect derived protein source can almost match the growth rate of that in fish receiving a control diet containing more conventional fishmeal protein. The digestibility of diets containing Ento-Protein is also proving excellent, says the company.

The investigations are being directed by Dr. Lou D'Abramo. The stage three trials began on 14 February 14 will continue until next week. They involve a total of 600 hybrid striped bass, of which 120 of the fish were fed a conventional diet for control purposes. The remaining 480 fish were divided into four groups of 120 and each given a different formulation of an Ento-Protein(TM) based ration. No other special ingredients were included in these diets.

According to Ernest D. Papadoyanis, Neptune President and CEO, these are remarkable results, and if verified and confirmed by the rest of the trial, will represent a significant step forward for Neptune, and the entire aquaculture industry.

"Developing a sustainable fishmeal replacement for aquaculture diets represents the single most critical issue facing the industry today, and the news that Neptune has achieved a growth equivalent of 80/85 per cent of that of fishmeal based diets, would be received enthusiastically," he added.

Next Steps

Neptune's next steps are likely to investigate the inclusion of various natural sources alongside the Ento-Protein - nutritional elements that should lift growth rates up meet 90-95 per cent of what is achieved using fishmeal-based diets.

It is also laying foundations to scale up production of the protein in readiness for a commercial marketing activities. Neptune says it expects to bring to market the current formulations for use in specialty markets for pets, zoos, and for tropical fish beginning in the first quarter of 2009.

Ento-Protein(TM) is a high quality sustainable protein derived from insects, which is intended to be a replacement for the rapidly depleting fishmeal made from wild caught feedstock species, for which there is currently a $7 billion worldwide market.

Further Reading

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Ellen Hardy

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