A canola crop. Botaneco's product is "possibly the most nutritionally advanced canola protein concentrate ever developed", says the company.

‘Excellent growth’ in salmon fed canola protein

Salmon used in feed trials for a canola-based protein produced by natural ingredient manufacturer Botaneco responded exceptionally well, showing high feed intake with full consumption and normal behaviour at all test levels, according to project partner Protein Industries Canada (PIC).

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The trials were carried out at the Centre for Aquaculture Technologies in Prince Edward Island, Atlantic Canada.

Botaneco’s canola-based ingredient has a 75% protein content and was developed as part of a CAN$8 million co-investment project announced by PIC, an industry-led non-profit organisation, in June 2019.

Weight gain

Along with Corteva Agrisciences Canada and Rowland Farms, Botaneco is commercialising novel processing technology that will be used to develop new value-added plant-based ingredients for the food, feed and personal care markets.

Testing of the canola protein ingredient began in 2019 with digestibility and growth trials, and the product tested was found to be one of the most effective plant-based proteins for aquaculture, said PIC.

Salmon showed excellent feed acceptance, salmon growth and weight gain.

Key validation point

“Successful completion of this growth trial is one of the key validation points we have now achieved, which is in addition to the advantage we have on cost, scale, sustainability and intellectual property,” said Botaneco president and chief executive James Szarko.

“Our proprietary oilseed manufacturing platform represents a generational opportunity to transform how the world processes oilseeds, creating access to new world markets. This milestone is a key step in advancing Botaneco toward commercialisation.”

The company’s chief operating officer, David Dzisiak, said: “Salmon aquaculture is a global growth industry and one of its important needs is additional sources of feed protein.

“Canola brings large scale and has the right nutritional profile for salmon but could not be used due to the way it has been processed.

“The results of this trial show that based on fish growth, feed conversion and intake, Botaneco’s canola protein is a nutritious alternative for salmon. It is possibly the most nutritionally advanced canola protein concentrate ever developed.”