Development of alternative sustainable fish feeds to promote human health using novel non-conventional indigenous ingredients

Lead Research Organisation: University of Stirling
Department Name: Institute of Aquaculture

Abstract

Omega-3 (n-3) long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (Omega-3), eicosapentaenoic (EPA) and docosahexaenoic (DHA) acids, are essential dietary nutrients with key roles in neural development, immune and inflammatory responses, and beneficial effects in several pathological conditions, including cardiovascular and neurological diseases, and some cancers. Many national and international bodies recommend a daily intake of up to 500 mg of Omega-3 for optimum health. It is known that in countries with low economic status the availability of Omega-3 in the food supply is low and often below the minimum recommended intake. It is now appreciated that improvement of human nutrition in terms of fatty acid composition is an important goal and so the primary objective of the project is to address this nutritional deficiency in poor populations in India, Kenya and Tanzania.
Almost all long-chain Omega-3 is produced by microalga in marine and freshwater ecosystems and thus fish are the predominant source of these nutrients in the human diet with farmed fish now accounting for around 50% of consumption. However, the only sources of Omega-3 for feeds for farmed fish are fishmeal and fish oil that are also finite and limited resources derived from wild fisheries. Projecting recommended dietary intakes for Omega-3 to a population of 7 billion shows a large gap between supply from fish/seafood (whether wild or farmed) and demand. Therefore, supply of Omega-3 for optimal human nutrition is a global problem that transcends geographical and political boundaries. Conventional plant proteins and vegetable oils do not contain long-chain Omega-3 but their precursor, ALA (short-chain omega-3), can be abundant in terrestrial and freshwater plants. In addition, many freshwater fish species including common carp and Nile tilapia have the metabolic capacity to convert dietary ALA to EPA and DHA. Therefore, one potential option for increasing the amount of Omega-3 available to human populations is to exploit the endogenous ability of freshwater fish species to produce EPA and DHA from ALA. Fish farming in India and Africa is dominated by carp and tilapia production - the species of greatest interest for the production of Omega-3 in farmed fish. Intensification of carp and tilapia aquaculture with associated increased use of supplementary and manufactured feeds provides the opportunity to enhance nutritional quality of the farmed products through higher Omega-3 contents derived from dietary ALA. This must be done sustainably and thus without the use of finite and/or expensive global commodities or competing with existing human food resources or animal feedstuffs represented by current agricultural crops.
The aim of the present proposal is to improve Omega-3 status of farmed carp and tilapia in India and Africa (Kenya and Tanzania) for the benefit of poor local populations using indigenous, non-conventional feed ingredients. In this context, we aim to apply and expand current knowledge of nutrient and fatty acid compositions of a range of local, indigenous materials including freshwater plants, microbes and seaweeds and assess their availability, feasibility and potential as feed ingredients in terms of nutritional quality, supply level, and socio-economic viability. Selected novel ingredients will be tested in carp and tilapia feeding studies for ability to support growth, development and health of farmed fish and to enhance nutritional quality through increased the Omega-3 content. The potential of the novel feed ingredients for further widespread application and industrial and commercial scale-up will also be assessed in order to facilitate their exploitation as novel indigenous feed ingredients.

Technical Summary

The proposal aims to improve n-3 (Omega-3) long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acid (LC-PUFA), eicosapentaenoate (EPA) and docosahexaenoate (DHA), contents of farmed carp and tilapia in India and Africa for the benefit of poor local populations consuming the fish. n-3 LC-PUFA are essential dietary nutrients with beneficial effects in several pathological conditions and many international bodies recommend daily intakes of up to 500mg for optimum health. However, availability of n-3 LC-PUFA in the food supply is low and often below minimum recommended intake in countries with low economic status. Furthermore, there is a large gap between supply and demand for n-3 LC-PUFA showing this is a global problem that transcends geographical and political boundaries. Higher plants do not contain n-3 LC-PUFA but their precursor, linolenic acid (ALA), can be abundant in terrestrial and freshwater plants and many freshwater fish species including carp and tilapia, that are farmed in India and Africa, have the metabolic capacity to convert dietary ALA to EPA and DHA. Therefore, one potential option for increasing the amount of n-3 LC-PUFA available, particularly to poor populations, is to exploit the endogenous ability of farmed freshwater fish to produce EPA and DHA from ALA. In this context, we aim to apply and expand knowledge of nutrient and fatty acid compositions of sustainable, local, indigenous materials including macrophytes, microbes and macroalgae to assess their availability, feasibility and potential as feed ingredients in terms of nutritional quality, supply, and socio-economic viability. Selected novel ingredients will be tested in carp and tilapia feeding studies for ability to support growth and health of fish and to enhance nutritional quality through increased n-3 LC-PUFA content. The potential of the novel ingredients for widespread application and industrial and commercial scale-up will be assessed to facilitate their sustainable use as feed ingredients.

Planned Impact

This project will benefit a broad range of local people in Africa, India and the UK. It will principally benefit small-scale fish farmers in India, Kenya and Tanzania by providing them with alternate fish feeds that do not contain expensive and increasingly scarce ingredients such as fishmeal and fish oil. This will increase the economic sustainability of their fish farms, helping to support reduction in poverty and increasing food security for the local communities. The inclusion of locally sourced ingredients will enable this to happen two ways, first the cost of the fish feed will be reduced and, secondly, it will ensure that that prices of the fish feed are more stable, allowing the fish farmer to plan better for the future. In addition to benefitting the fish farmer directly there will be additional benefits to the local community. The new ingredients for the fish food will all be produced in the same community as the fish farmer. This will create more jobs and livelihoods not just from those who will produce the new raw materials, but also for those who process and transport those raw materials. This will potentially increase wealth in the community and help to reduce poverty. This research will not only increase food security at a community level but will also increase it at a national level, by reducing the reliance on imported food materials such as fishmeal and oil, soybean products etc. and this could have knock on benefits to the balance of trade within these countries.
The alternate feed ingredients are also being chosen specifically to promote the content of n-3 long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (LC-PUFA) in the farmed fish. These fatty acids are crucial for good health but countries like Kenya and Tanzania have some of the lowest consumption rates for these fats of anywhere in the world. By including these new feed ingredients in fish produced locally these beneficial fatty acids are passed on from the raw ingredients to the fish and then on to the people who eat them. This has the potential to improve the health of these poor populations through cheap locally produced foods that have the potential to reduce diseases such as heart disease, dementia and some cancers. Therefore, the development of alternate fish feeds rich in these ingredients will reduce the suffering and economic cost of these diseases in countries with poorly developed health services.
In addition to the health, social and economic benefits this research project will also increase the level of scientific knowledge in all the countries involved. This will be of particular benefit to countries like Kenya and Tanzania where this project will work to ensure that the scientists and students involved with the project will be trained in the latest scientific skills and techniques. This will ensure that the project leaves a legacy within these countries of highly skilled scientists, networked to the international scientific community, who will be able to then develop another generation of high quality scientists. This knowledge exchange will also be of direct benefit to UK and Indian scientists, allowing them to learn from their colleagues in other countries and bring back that knowledge to help their domestic economies. In the UK we face similar issues with our fish farming industry, which is reliant on imports of fishmeal and oil, and expensive soybean protein concentrates, all mainly from South America and other countries outside the EU. The concept of a holistic approach to solving this problem through development of new potential feed ingredients from indigenous plants/crops is equally relevant in the UK. Therefore, the technology and information developed within this project will be applicable within the UK fish farming industry and provide valuable information for ongoing UK research into finding alternate ingredients for fish feeds.
 
Description The SNIPH project has resulted in a number of key achievements.
1.The biochemical composition of freshwater macrophytes was shown to vary considerably depending upon where and when it was harvested. This impacted the nutritional quality of the macrophytes in terms of lipid content and fatty acid composition, specifically ALA (18:3n-3) content. While the effect of season was outwith the scope of SNIPH, the impact of organic and inorganic fertilisers were assessed.
2. Culturing the macrophytes under more controlled environmental conditions and with the addition of fertilizers considerably impacted biochemical composition and, in particular, increased lipid and ALA contents making the harvested macrophytes far more useful as ingredients to potentially increase omega-3 LC-PUFA contents of farmed fish.
3. Fish species also varied in their ability to thrive on diets containing alternative ingredients such as freshwater macrophytes and marine macroalage, with common carp (Cyprinus carpio) being able to tolerate high levels of macrophytes better than Rohu (Labeo rohita) and tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus).
4. Cultured Lemna minor and Spirodella polyrhiza were the best freshwater macrophytes in terms of lipid and ALA contents, followed by Ipomoea aquatic and Azolla.
5. Diets containing cultured Lemna minor and, to a lesser extent, Spirodella poyrhiza, improved growth performance and omega-3 LC-PUFA, EPA and DHA, content of common carp.
6. In contrast, growth of Rohu and Tilapia was generally suppressed when fed diets containing either freshwater macrophytes or marine macroalgae. However, there was still some positive impact on EPA and DHA levels, at least in Rohu fed the cultured macrophytes. 7. Although some marine macroalgae (seaweeds) could contain low levels of EPA and also ALA (though rarely DHA), the generally very low lipid contents limited their potential to positively affect omega-3 LC-PUFA levels of fish fed diets containing these ingredients.
8. Studies to improve the nutritional content of marine macroalgae identified ensilation methods as potentially useful in terms of improving levels of EPA and DHA.
8. At least two bacterial isolates prepared from samples obtained from the marine environment around Goa contained ALA and at least one has been shown to improve both growth and EPA+DHA content in tilapia reared on feeds containing up to 5 % of dried bacterial isolate.
9. In conculsion, the SNIPH project has some novel ingredients that, when processed and included in feeds at appropriate levels have the potential to both improve growth performance and also increase the EPA and/or DHA (omega-3 LC-PUFA) contents of certain fish species, including common carp and possible tilapia.
10. The results of SNIPH have the potential to produce societal and health benefits and, ultimately economic benefits if they can be expanded and scaled to a more commercially relevant level.

WP1, Literature surveys. Two large reports on freshwater macrophytes and marine macrophytes (seaweeds) and their past use and potential future use as ingredients in feeds for farmed fish have been produced as key outcomes of WP1 that focussed on establishing the state-of the-art in terms of current knowledge of the nutritional contents and compositions of these potential ingredients and their use in feeds for farmed finfish. These reports have been deposited in the project website and are available to the public. Both are currently being adapted for publication as open-access articles in the peer-reviewed scientific literature.
WP2, New analyses of local potential ingredients. The existing literature data proved to be rather patchy in terms of nutritional compositions and therefore a key outcome of WP2 has been new analyses of some 70 species of freshwater macrophyte, seaweeds, bacterial isolates and microalgae that are either available locally at he sites of the project partners in India (Delhi, Kerela and Goa) and East Africa (Tanzania and Kenya), or being produced by project partners (e.g. as in Delhi, freshwater macrophytes and Goa, bacterial isolates). In Tanzania and Kenya, plus Kerala, samples of macrophytes and seaweeds were also collected from the wild. These samples were collected, processed and dried at the partner facilities before shipping to University of Stirling for analyses. These data, particularly in terms of lipid content and fatty acid composition, have greatly expanded our knowledge of the nutritional composition of a large range of potential new ingredients. The work in Delhi investigating the culture of freshwater macrophytes and the effects of different fertilizer strategies (organic/manure and inorganic) has not only characterised the optimal environmental conditions (temperature and light, pond characteristics) for culture but also shown that fertiliser strategies greatly impact lipid and fatty acid contents and compositions. This has not only clearly identified good fertiliser strategies, but also show how farming the macrophytes and culturing them in in at least semi-controlled conditions results in enhanced omega- 3 levels compared to plants harvested from the wild. Therefore, a comprehensive database of all the potential ingredients has been established and also uploaded to the project website. Freshwater plants in general and some key species (e.g. Lemna sp.) have been identified as the most promising candidates due to their local abundance (which shows they should be easy to culture), potential for use as feed ingredients based specifically, and critically, on lipid content and and fatty acid composition. In addition, certain microalgae (e.g chlorella) and marine bacteria with potential for de novo long-chain omega-3 PUFA synthesis were identified for fish feeding trials. Further work discussed at the Annual Meetings in East Africa (Sokoine University of Agriculture, Tanzania and Machakos University, Kenya; March 2018) and in India (Delhi, February 2019) identified that further studies on the effects of environmental conditions and fertilizers on macrophyte composition were key future activities in SNIPH during 2019 as well as extending culture of appropriate macrophytes with potential in the other partner locations, Kenya and Tanzania. WP3, Fish feeding trials. From the above database, a selection of primary candidates were chosen for further research involving feeding studies with key relevant farmed finish species in all the partner sites, Delhi (Rohu), Goa (indian carp), Kerala (Tilapia), Tanzania (Tilapia, SUA) and Kenya (Tilapia, Machakos University). In most centres, two main ingredients were tested in a first round of trials including Lemna sp that was tested at several sites including Delhi, Tanzania and Kenya, along with another ingredient that varied between sites. In this way, the project had one similar ingredient tested to provide a level of continuity between trials, but also tested several different ingredients including seaweed (Ulva sp., Kerala, Tanzania), Euchema (Kenya) and bacterial biomass (Goa). This first round of fish feeding trials were completed in all other partners during 2018. Detailed protocols for performing the dietary trials based on a standardised design albeit tailored for the specific requirements of each individual trial (size of fish, and tank set up, number of fish in trial etc), sampling protocols and analyses protocols were developed and distributed to all partners. This was essential to ensure the required data were obtained from the feeding trials. The bottom line being the lipid content and fatty acid composition of the fish that will enable endogenous production to be assessed and the utility of the potential ingredients to be assessed. Discussions at the Annual Meetings in East Africa (2018) and India (2019) developed the project strategy for WP2 as well as further studies on effects of culture and fertilizers on macrophyte composition, and further fish trials including a mixture of further testing of potential ingredients such as Ipomoea aquatica and Azolla, as well as more in depth studies of the most promising candidates to include a trial with larger fish being fed the ingredient at optimal inclusion up to near market size to confirm the effects on product quality in terms of flesh omega-3 content. This is challenging in terms of the amount of ingredient and feed required, as well as the fish culture facilities necessary (larger tanks etc). However, second round of trials are currently underway or in final planning in March 2019. WP4, Socio-economic analyses etc. Task 4.1, Value chain and key stakeholder databases were established for partners Kenya and Tanzania. The database proved more difficult to establish in India and is a task that is looking difficult to achieve within the remaining time of the project. However, these are ongoing tasks that will continue throughout the project to be as comprehensive as possible. Task 4.2, Optimisation of dietary ingredient allocation is essentially completed and only requires nutritional data arising from WP3 to enable its completion. Task 4.3, Evaluation of perceptions and adoption potential of non-conventional feed ingredients, based on a quantitative survey and analysis of farmers feed use and perceptions of non-conventional ingredients in fish feed was completed in India in early 2018 and in Kenya and Tanzania during the rest of 2018 with the assistance of Masters students (Tanzania) and an intern (Kenya). Task 4.4, Cost benefit analyses. As this is a scoping project testing a range of ingredients with a "best choice" only likely to be identified at the very end of the project, traditional Cost-Benefit analyses were not appropriate. Therefore, after much discussion, a different approach using a likely candidate species (Lemna minor) that we have most data for was employed. This was a scoring and ranking exercise with SNIPH partners and other experts (e.g. Delphi/expert opinion survey). It weighted which species can be produced on large scale equally with which has the most potential as non-conventional ingredient (according to a number of weighed criteria). The results of these analyses, carried out at the Annual Meeting in Delhi in February 2019, is currently being analysed.
WP5, Training and knowledge exchange. This is a back loaded WP and most of this will only be achieved during this final year of the project. Currently, stakeholder contact databases established in Africa (partially in India). Email, WhatsApp and Facebook sites have been set up in Kenya and similar in progress in Tanzania. Leaflets prepared in both Kenya and Tanzania and now being checked finally prior to printing.
Exploitation Route With fish feeding trials still in progress, it is too early to say for certain, especially in terms of whether any off the possible novel ingredients could have commercial potental. However, KE is a key component of the project such that there is an entire workpackage (WP5) devoted to this. Thus, WP 5 has clearly mapped and defined mechanisms for the rapid and efficient roll out of the outcomes of this project to the very communities the project has been designed to facilitate this process, including training and other extension activities. This WP has been specifically conceived and developed to maximise all the impacts of the project.
Sectors Agriculture, Food and Drink,Healthcare

URL https://www.facebook.com/SNIPHImproving-Omega-3-Levels-in-Farmed-Fish-Project-278333302585733/
 
Description The project is developing and increasing awareness of omega-3 (n-3) long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (LC-PUFA) and the potential benefits to health among key stakeholders in India and Africa. The project has made considerable progress and a targeted selection of materials (freshwater macrophytes, seaweeds, microalgae and bacterial biomass) with potential to be useful ingredients in feeds for farmed finish in India and East Africa were identified and investigated in a series of fish feeding trials with tilapia, rohu and carp in Kenya, Tanzania and India. So far two ingredients have been tested at all the partners involved in fish trials. The specific choice of ingredients was based on local availability and, critically, newly evaluated nutritional profiles (as part of SNIPH) focussing specifically on lipid content and fatty acid composition, that identified these ingredients as having the potential to possibly increase the levels of the n-3 (omega-3) LC-PUFA, EPA and DHA, in fish reared on feeds containing these ingredients. In all partners Lemna minor was tested to provide some continuity oil the trials throughout the project with the other ingredient tested being different in all partners to widen the number of ingredients tested. Lemna minor and, to a lesser extent, Spirodela polyrhiza successfully increased the omega-3 LC-PUFA (EPA and DHA) content of farmed common carp in trials [performed at the University of Delhi. Growth performance was also improved in carp fed Lemna minor. In contrast, growth performance was negatively impacted by inclusion of the alternative ingredients in most of the other fish feeding trials and omega-3 LC-PUFA levels were only marginally affected. The impacts on growth performance were a disappointment but not entirely unexpected as some of the ingredients had been tested in previous fish feeding trials as protein sources. However, the impact or lack of impact on omega-3 LC-PUFA levels were new data. While all the ingredients had potential (in terms of their fatty acid composition) to positively impact omega- 3 LC-PUFA levels in fish fed diets containing them, the low or very low lipid levels in this ingredients is a serious problem. However, this just also further highlighted the positive results fro the trials in Delhi with Lemna and Spirodella that were actually cultivated by the SNIPH partner, DU. By cultivating the freshwater macrophytes under more ideal and carefully controlled conditions (environmental and, especially, using fertilisers to improve production), the lipid content and fatty acid composition of the macrophytes could be greatly enhanced. Therefore, one key finding of the SNIPH project is that only with proper controlled cultivation of the freshwater macrophytes, can the nutritional composition and quality be sufficiently high to positively impact omega-3 LC-PUFA levels in fish farmed on feeds containing the macrophytes. A second key finding is that common carp have so far proved to be the most tolerant of the new, alternative ingredients and growth performance was actually improved rather than being negatively impacted as in the case of tilapia and rohu. If the results obtained with Lemna minor in common carp could be replicated in pond trials (unfortunately outwith the scope of SNIPH) the SNIPH project could have significant benefits in poor local communities. at societal (improved health) and cultural (growing/culturing and using new ingredients locally) levels, and may also provide an economic impact (premium for high quality farmed fish etc). Thus, the project should provide societal and economic impacts and is truly multidisciplinary bringing together experts in whole organism biology, in terms of fish nutrition and nutrigenomics, and qualitative and quantitative social research techniques to assess suitability of non-conventional fish feeds in carp and tilapia aquaculture. For instance, results from both economic analyses, feed ingredient testing and stakeholder perceptions will feed into optimal allocation analysis of the non-conventional ingredients.
First Year Of Impact 2018
Sector Agriculture, Food and Drink,Healthcare
Impact Types Cultural,Societal

 
Title Establishment of Kjeldahl protein quantification at Sokoine University of Agriculture (SUA) 
Description A new Kjeldahl protein apparatus was procured by SUA from AMPCS LTD, Unit 5, Monument Offices, Maldon Road, Woodham Mortimer, Essex. UoS played a key role in the procurement process enabling the payment for the equipment directly from the SUA budget. The apparatus was ordered in August 2017, delivered directly to Tanzania from the Swedish suppliers in November 2017 and invoiced and paid in December 2017. Specifically, the apparatus purchased included the KjelROC Auto Distillation Unit and KjelROC Digestor 20 Auto, incl. 1 rack (with exhaust), KjelROC Scrubber and service kit. The order also included Installation & Service via two technical site visits by an AMPCS engineer to install the apparatus and also service the apparatus at the end of the SNIPH project to ensure the continuing legacy of the project. 
Type Of Material Improvements to research infrastructure 
Year Produced 2018 
Provided To Others? Yes  
Impact This apparatus now means that protein determinations are now possible in-house at Sokoine University of Agriculture (SUA), Morogoro, Tanzania and this analysis no longer has to be outsourced. So far, this analysis (on dried macrophyte and seaweed samples as part of WP2) has been performed for SUA by University of Stirling. However, this will not be possible for the fish and tissue samples generated from the fish feeding trials in WP3. Thus, it was essential to establish proximate composition analyses in SUA. SUA already had the ovens required for moisture and ash analyses and have the equipment required for extracting and quantifying lipid. The apparatus will also now be available to the whole of SUA and other researchers in Tanzania, especially in relation to aquaculture and farmed animal production and feeding. 
 
Title Nutritional compositions of freshwater macrophytes and seaweeds available in India, Kenya and Tanzania. 
Description Database of nutritional contents, focussing on proximate composition (MOPA, moisture, oil, protein and ash, with carbohydrate by subtraction) and, in particular, fatty acid compositions, of a range of freshwater macrophytes and marine macrophytes (seaweeds) available in the local areas of project partners in India (Delhi, Kerala and Goa), Kenya and Tanzania. 
Type Of Material Database/Collection of data 
Year Produced 2018 
Provided To Others? Yes  
Impact The database of nutritional compositions (proximate, lipid content and fatty acid composition) of around 70 species of freshwater macrophytes and seaweeds analysed fro the SNIPH project along with existing literature data (fragmentary, incomplete and poorly described/characterised in most cases) is available as two large Reports (one for freshwater macrophytes and one for seaweeds) on the SNIPH website. The Marine macrophytes (seaweed) report has been modified and reformatted as a publishable review that has been submitted for publication to "Reviews in Aquaculture". The freshwater macrophyte review is considerable larger (156pp, with >300 references) due to the greater amount of previous research activity and is therefore too large for publication as a regular review. This is now being reviewed by all project partners with an aim to produce, if possible, two separate publishable literature reviews. 
URL http://sniph.stir.ac.uk/home
 
Title Value chain and stakeholder databases for each of the target partner countries, India, Kenya and Tanzania. 
Description Databases in the form of Excel spreadsheets detailing the key stakeholders in the value chain for farmed fish in each of the partner countries. Stakeholders include farmers, feed producers, fish breeders, hatcheries, consultants and other sector experts, fisheries officers, researchers et al. 
Type Of Material Database/Collection of data 
Year Produced 2017 
Provided To Others? Yes  
Impact Datbases like these were apparently not already available to the partners in India, Kenya or Tanzania. Indeed, many of the partners had no real understanding of what such a database should look like. Therefore this has been a key part of the project (WP4, Task 4.1). All partners now understand exactly what stakeholder and value chain analysis means and the resulting databases will be very useful in the future providing a further legacy of the the project. These databases are not complete and work i continuing and will continue till the end of the project to ensure they are as complete and as comprehensive as possible. 
URL https://stir.app.box.com/folder/8715175421
 
Description AAK 
Organisation Aquacultural Association of Kenya
Country Kenya 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution The UoS, as coordinators and leaders of the project bring expertise and intellectual input.
Collaborator Contribution The AKK bring access to fish farmers in Kenya.
Impact None.
Start Year 2016
 
Description DTU 
Organisation Delhi Technological University
Country India 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution The UoS, as coordinators and leaders of the project bring expertise and intellectual input.
Collaborator Contribution DTU bring expertise on fish farming and feeds in India.
Impact None as yet.
Start Year 2016
 
Description Delhi University 
Organisation University of Delhi
Department Department of Zoology
Country India 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution As project coordinators and lead, UoS support all partners with expertise and intellectual input. We are collaborating the analyses of fish feeding trials - specifically lipid and fatty acid analyses of feed ingredients, formulated feeds and fish (tissues), and gene expression in fish. UoS is responsible for all gene expression analyses and supporting fatty acid analyses in Delhi. Staff from Delhi University have visited UoS and have received some initial training in molecular analyses and also in the methodologies used in UoS for lipid and fatty acid analyses.
Collaborator Contribution Delhi University are lead and hub partner for the project in India and are responsible for manufacturing the trial feeds for all Indian partners. In addition, Delhi University are culturing several species of freshwater macrophytes, processing these and preparing feeds, as well as carrying out fish feeding trials in common carp, tilapia and indian carps. Delhi will also assist in the socio-economic analyses and training in India.
Impact None so far.
Start Year 2016
 
Description Goa University 
Organisation Goa University
Country India 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution The UoS, as coordinators and leaders of the project bring expertise and intellectual input.
Collaborator Contribution Goa University bring expertise on marine bacteria and their culture and will be the main partners delivering fatty acid analyses to the project for Indian partners.
Impact None as yet
Start Year 2016
 
Description KUFOS 
Organisation Kerala University of Fisheries and Ocean Studies
Country India 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution The UoS, as coordinators and leaders of the project bring expertise and intellectual input.
Collaborator Contribution KUFOS bring expertise on Indian seaweeds and their culture and will be also carry out fish trials on tilapia in India.
Impact None as yet.
Start Year 2016
 
Description Kerala University 
Organisation University of Kerala
Country India 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution The UoS, as coordinators and leaders of the project bring expertise and intellectual input.
Collaborator Contribution Prof Padmakumar Kumar has moved from KUFOS to Kerala University (KU). Therefore, through Prof. Kumar, KU will now bring the expertise on Indian seaweeds and their culture and will be also carry out fish trials on tilapia in India.
Impact Samples of a selection of around 20 seaweeds available in the Kerala area were provided to UoS by Prof Kumar fro nutritional analyses. A key output in WP2. (Note. KU signing of project collaborative agreement is in progress).
Start Year 2017
 
Description Machakos University 
Organisation Machakos University College
Country Kenya 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution The UoS, as coordinators and leaders of the project bring expertise and intellectual input.
Collaborator Contribution Machakos University is the lead Kenyan partner responsible for coordinating and delivering all the research required for the project in Kenya. MU are working with and coordinating the work of other Kenyan partners including the National Aquaculture Research, Development & Training Centre (NARDTC) , State Department of Fisheries, and the Aquacultural Association of Kenya that collectively bring expertise of fish farming and feeds in Kenya.
Impact None as yet.
Start Year 2016
 
Description SAMS 
Organisation Scottish Association For Marine Science
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution Collaboration on the use of marine macroalgae (seaweeds) as potential ingredients for fish feeds. A Masters project was carried out at UoS using algal materials provided by SAMS. These materials were analysed at UoS for biochemical (protein, lipid, ash, moisture) and fatty acid contents and compositions.
Collaborator Contribution SAMS provided the seaweeds and algal materials fro analyses including seaweeds processed by insilation.
Impact One masters thesis with data on lipid and fatty acid (omega-3 ) contents of Scottish seaweeds and the effects of insulation on lipid and fatty acid contents.
Start Year 2016
 
Description Sokoine 
Organisation Sokoine University of Agriculture
Department Department of Animal, Aquaculture & Range Sciences
Country Tanzania, United Republic of 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution The UoS, as coordinators and leaders of the project bring expertise and intellectual input.
Collaborator Contribution Sokoine University bring expertise on fish farming and feeds in Tanzania.
Impact None as yet
Start Year 2016
 
Description State Department of Fisheries 
Organisation Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries
Country Kenya 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution The UoS, as coordinators and leaders of the project bring expertise and intellectual input.
Collaborator Contribution The State Department of fisheries brings expertise on fish farming and feeds in kenya and access to Governmental research and analytical laboratories and facilities.
Impact None.
Start Year 2016
 
Description Machakos University 1st Annual International Conference 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact One of the outreach activities in SNIPH is to present the project at relevant national and regional agricultural and similar type shows with opportunities to have a project stand and to present project posters, leaflets, manuals and feed samples as well as interact with new and existing stakeholders. Therefore, the SNIPH project was presented as a stand at the first Annual International Conference and Open Day at Machakos University, Kenya, 17-18 April 2018. The stand was manned by Dr Patricia Muendo and colleagues from the Kenya Marine and Fisheries Research Institute (KMFRI) and the Aquaculture Association of Kenya (AAK). The stand specifically publicised the SNIPH project, its aims and potential outcomes, introducing "omega-3" and providing background knowledge of their health benefits as part of a healthy diet.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL https://dvc-ril.mksu.ac.ke/conferences/first-annual-international-conference-2/
 
Description Project website 
Form Of Engagement Activity Engagement focused website, blog or social media channel
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact A dedicated project website was established within the University of Stirling website.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://sniph.stir.ac.uk/home
 
Description Project-specific social media groups (Facebook and WhatsApp) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Engagement focused website, blog or social media channel
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact Project specific social media accounts including Facebook and WhatsApp are online and have developed significant membership. These are managed by the local partners in Kenya and Tanzania and are used as a platform to publicise the project and its goals, and to develop and engage with an extensive network of stakeholders. In addition, the project is also on Twitter (#sniph).
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL https://en-gb.facebook.com/SNIPHImproving-Omega-3-Levels-in-Farmed-Fish-Project-278333302585733/
 
Description Publicity leaflets and posters 
Form Of Engagement Activity A magazine, newsletter or online publication
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact A4 leaflets and pin-up posters based on them were developed in each of the partner countries, Tanzania, Kenya and India to explain the project and its aims to the public. These are as paper copies and have or will be translated into the local language where necessary. This is a main aim in India but English is still the main language for all key stakeholders in East Africa. The pdfs of these leaflets and posters will be uploaded to the SNIPH website.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://sniph.stir.ac.uk
 
Description School visits (Stirling) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact In the last two years, December 2017 and November/December 2018, the Nutrition Research Group (NRG) of them Institute of Aquaculture, University of Stirling (IoA/UoS) have run events at local schools. As part of the IoA/UoS's Schools outreach in partnership with Business in the Community Scotland's 'Food for Thought' programme, we have visited five primary schools to date within the Stirlingshire area to educate children on the role of seafood and healthy eating. In 2017, Balfron Primary School (01/12/17) and St Ninians Primary School (06/12/17) were visited and, in 2018, Callander Primary School (21/11/18), Newton Primary School (22/11/18) and Bannockburn High School (07/12/18), all in Stirlingshire, Scotland were visited. These events are not only beneficial to the children, with the hope of changing their eating habits as well as attracting them into STEM based subjects, but also on a personal level by giving members of the Nutrition team the opportunity to develop communication and teaching skills to a much younger audience
Specifically, the enterprise is a three-way partnership between the Scottish Government, Education Scotland and BITC Scotland (Business in the Community) that aims to support teachers in providing high quality food education. The main purpose of our visits was to highlight the health benefits of eating fish which, of course, is focussed on "omega-3" and the importance of fish and seafood in providing this and how the research we are carrying out in The Institute of aquaculture, University of stirring is aiming to maintain and improve the contents of omega-3 in farmed fish like salmon. Children were invited to see and hold as well as learn about some of the different seafood species, both farmed and wild, available to consumers from UK waters and beyond. In addition, children got to learn about key organs and processes via a fish dissection practical, found out why eating fish is good for us and why good nutrition is also important for farmed fish, as well as getting to try some smoked salmon on oatcakes - some of whom have never tried fish before!
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018,2019
 
Description Scottish Government Business in the Community "Food for Thought" programme. 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact The "Food for Thought" programme was University Outreach work targeting school children sponsored by the Scottish Government and Business in the Community (BITC). The Nutrition Group of the Institute of Aquaculture, University of Stirling mounted a fully interactive exhibition and demonstration focussing on Omega-3. This included farmed fish fish, feeds, models etc. to engage the children in thinking about healthy eating and to promote Omega-3s and the importance of fish and seafood and, especially the role of aquaculture in providing these key dietary ingredients.
Dr Bill Clark participated in the UoS delegation and further promoted the work we are doing in the SNIPH project to try and increase the omega- 3 content and, thus, "healthiness" of locally farmed fish in India and Africa. There will be a URL for this activity soon as it will be a key component of the next faculty newsletter (April 2018) that is made available to the general public via the UoS website.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description Stakeholder training workshop (India) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact Dissemination of research knowledge obtained in SNIPH to society is an important component of the project. In addition, SNIPH is dedicated to providing specific training to key stakeholders largely via specific workshops organised by SNIPH partners in India and East Africa. These workshops are focussed on all key stakeholders in the fish feed value chain. The Workshops are aimed at presenting SNIPH results but also to provide opportunities for feedback, ideas and interaction from stakeholders. The Indian Training Workshop was organised by Prof Rina Chakrabarti (Delhi University) and Dr JaiGopal Sharma (Technical University of Delhi), and was held in the facilities of theAqua Research Laboratory, Department of Zoology, Delhi University on 15-17 March 2019 with around 30 participants attending. The objective of this particular training programme was to update workshop participants on the application of non-conventional, locally available ingredients (e.g. freshwater macrophytes) in fish feed formulation. The workshop, entitled "Recent Advances in Fish Nutrition", offered a hands-on training programme including identification of aquatic macrophytes with high nutritive values; culture and production techniques of useful macrophytes; study of biochemical composition of the macrophytes in terms of protein, lipids, calorific value, amino acid profile and fatty acid profile; formulation of fish feed using these ingredients; culture of carps and tilapia with prepared feeds and maintenance of water quality in the culture systems; evaluation of quality of cultured fish viz. carcass composition, amino acid and fatty acid profiles. The workshop explained that the use of these ingredients could improve the quality of farmed fish in terms of protein and lipid compositions, especially amino acid and fatty acid profiles of fish flesh. In addition to key Indian stakeholders, staff from the Kenyan and Tanzanian partners also attended the workshop and then set dates for their own workshops to be held later in 2019 with careful selection of approximately 20-30 participants to attend in each country.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2019
URL http://www.aquaresearchlab.org