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Larry Feinberg: Increasingly encouraged by trial results. Photo: KnipBio
Larry Feinberg: Increasingly encouraged by trial results. Photo: KnipBio

Alternative proteins producer KnipBio has announced the successful completion of a feed efficacy trial on Atlantic salmon using KBM500, its astaxanthin-rich premium protein.

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This marks the third version of KnipBio’s single cell protein (SCP) to pass initial quality and efficacy trials, the Massachusetts-based biotech company said in a press release.

The feed trials showed no significant difference in feed conversion ratio or weight gain for Atlantic salmon fed diets containing 5%, 10%, and 15% KBM500 when compared to fish fed a standard diet. The trials were conducted over a period of 28 days by an independent, third-party research organisation.  

‘Equal or better than fishmeal’

KnipBio chief executive Larry Feinberg said: “To make this feed trial possible, we had to first scale production of KBM500 to the interim manufacturing stage. This marks the third KBM product to be scaled to this size and is further demonstration of the maturity and reproducibility of the KnipBio Meal manufacturing technology.

“We have now completed successful efficacy trials with three different protein products: KBM203, which is rich in prebiotic compounds, our high-protein KBM324 ingredient, and now KBM500. The tests have been conducted on commercially important finfish and crustacean species including salmonids, yellowtail, and Pacific white shrimp, and demonstrated KBM-based aquafeed diets offer equal or better performance than fishmeal.

Functional feed

“We view this is strong evidence that KBM is highly suitable as a protein replacement for soy or fishmeal in an aquafeed, while at the same time providing additional functional feed benefits. I am increasingly encouraged by these trial results, particularly in the area of reduced animal mortality and overall growth performance.”

KnipBio said approximately 20 trials have successfully confirmed the effect of KBM on growth rates and feed conversion ratios, and have also confirmed KBM has no discernible effect on fish taste, colour, or texture.

Feinberg said the next stage is expanding research to include large-scale field trials.

“This will enable us to show the effectiveness of KBM in real-world conditions including exposure to potential pathogens and environmental fluctuations,” he said.

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