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Food Wastes as Fish Feeds

Hanna Stoner November 20, 2017

There have been many recent advances in potential feed solutions for fish. This has been sparked by the increasing need for food, and decreasing amounts in space available for food production. You can read more about this issue in my prior post here.

Worldwide there have been dramatic increases in population, which has lead to increases in waste. There is a lot of food waste as well, in the U.S it is estimated that between 30-40% of the food supply is disposed of as waste (“Frequently Asked Questions”). Much of this food is wholesome, edible and not contaminated. This food waste is the largest component going to landfills and quickly generates methane. Instead of letting this food waste, this food could be recycled and used as fish feed. In China they have used leftover food items, fit for human consumption, to feed fish. Corn meal, bread, noodles, flour and biscuits have been used to feed freshwater fish in South China (Lau et al, 2003)...

There are some issues with the implementation of food waste, since there are different food wastes from different sources, such as domestic homes versus commercial food companies or agriculture. Without the ability to properly separate different foods at the source, it would be challenging to produce a consistently nutritious feed. This could be done through implementing solid state fermentation, which would process food waste from single-food sources (such as manufactures) that could enhance crude protein as well as overall nutritional value (Lateef et al., 2008). Additionally, vitamins or supplements can be added to these food wastes to make them more consistently nutritional to fish. Although this has been primarily researched with fish at lower trophic levels (herbivores and omnivores), food waste based pellets have the potential to be processed to feed higher trophic level fish (carnivores) (Lau et al, 2003).

Enhance a Village is working to develop sustainable solutions for fisheries, and for agricultural areas of the Philippines. If you would like to learn more you can click here, if you would like to become involved you can donate or become involved by volunteering.


Frequently Asked Questions. (n.d.). Retrieved November 13, 2017, from Lateef, J.K. Oloke, E.G. Kana, S.O. Oyeniyi, O.R. Onifade, A.O. Oyeleye, O.C. Oladosu, A.O. Oyelami. "Improving the quality of agro-wastes by solid-state fermentation: enhanced antioxidant activities and nutritional qualities". World J. Microb. Biot., 24 (2008), pp. 2369-2374T.S.K. Lau, J.C.W. Lee, L. Young. "Pilot Project to Raise Awareness of the Ecological Importance of Pond-fish Farming in the Mai Po Inner Deep Bay Ramsar Site. World Wide Fund for Nature Hong Kong" (2003).Ming-Hung Wong, Wing-Yin Mo, Wai-Ming Choi, Zhang Cheng, Yu-Bon Man, "Recycle food wastes into high quality fish feeds for safe and quality fish production, In Environmental Pollution," Volume 219, 2016, Pages 631-638, ISSN 0269-7491,