fish feed formulation ingredients raw material for fish feed

Fish oil

Fish oil is an ingredient sourced from the same small bony fish or fish trimmings as fishmeal. The fish are pressed down to release the fish oil, the fish are then further processed into fishmeal using cooking and drying techniques.

Fish oil is a source of energy, but most importantly it provides the only source of long-chain omega-3 fatty acids, which are essential for fish and human health. Like humans, most fish cannot synthesis long-chain omega-3 fatty acids in the body, so they must be sourced from their food (e.g. in the case of cultured fish, omega-3’s come from the inclusion of fish oil from small bony fish or fish trimmings in feed).


Fishmeal is a high protein ingredient that is made from small bony fish or fish trimmings that are not commonly used for human consumption. It is used in feeds as a source of protein.

These ingredients are sourced internationally from countries such as Peru, Chile, Ecuador, and SE Asian countries and imported to Australia.

Fish Feed Formulation
Floating Fish Pellet Making Machine

Vitamins and minerals

Vitamins and minerals are added to the feeds to ensure that the fish obtain all the nutrients they require. These are the same vitamins and minerals as those used in supplements for humans.

Vegetable protein and oil ingredients

Vegetable ingredients such as wheat gluten, lupin meal and soya protein concentrate are used in feeds as a source of protein. Fish feeds are designed to achieve a balanced amino acid profile, and hence a mix of vegetable proteins are used.

The inclusion of wheat and faba bean are sources of carbohydrate. Carbohydrate in the form of starch is broken down into sugars and is used for energy, which has limited nutritional value for a carnivorous fish species. Instead carbohydrate is required in the manufacturing of the feed to help bind the pellet together making it stable and less likely to fall apart when it goes into the water before it is eaten.

It is also required for pellet durability to avoid any breakage or dust occurring when the feed is delivered through a mechanical feeding system to the fish, reducing the amount of smaller feed particles entering the water and decreasing the opportunity for nutrient discharge from the feed into the water before the fish can eat it.

Land-animal protein and oil ingredients

Land-animal ingredients used at Skretting Australia are sourced only from Australia and only from suppliers who are certified by the Australian Renders Association (ARA) and are AQIS export accredited. They are also subject to our own supplier approval program and regular audits by Skretting representatives. The animals used are reared for human consumption; therefore subject to strict quality and food safety controls.

Land-animal protein ingredients are a high quality source of protein, for example poultry meal has a very similar amino acid profile to that of fishmeal, making it a suitable replacement of fishmeal in fish feed for carnivorous animals such as salmon and trout.

Floating Fish Feed Procesing Line
How To Make Floating Fish Feed Pellets


Astaxanthin is a naturally occurring carotenoid that wild salmon extract from crustaceans that they feed on. This carotenoid is then laid down in the muscle tissue and transported to eggs during the breeding cycle of large salmonids. Salmon cannot synthesise astaxanthin so in aquaculture, nature-identical astaxanthin is added to the feed.

Table 1. Alternate Sources of Protein that are Being Evaluated or have Potential as Partial or Whole Replacement for Fish Meal in Aquaculture Diets


Not commercialized



Soy mealPoultry byproductsInsect larvae
Rapeseed mealFeather mealSingle cell protein
Sunflower mealShrimp and crab mealGrasses
Oat groatsBlood flourLeaf protein
Cottonseed mealFish silageVegetable silage
Wheat middlingsMeat mealZooplankton (krill, etc.)
  Recycled wastes
 Higher plants

Protein (range), %




Table 2 Some Compounds Occurring in Feedstuffs that are Known and/or Suspected of Causing Physiological Abnormalities or Otherwise Impairing the Growth of Fish


Found in

GlycosidesGrass and leaves
PhytatesAll plant foods tuffs
Mycotoxins (aflatoxin)Cereal-based meals not naturally occurring but produced by microorganisms
Cyclopropenoid fatty acidsCottonseed oil and meal
Trypsin inhibitorsSoy and rapeseed meal
MimosineLeaves (Leucaena leucocephala)
GlucosinolatesRapeseed meal
HaemoglutininsSoyabean meal
Plant phenolics
GossypolCottonseed meal
 TanninsRapeseed meal
Oxidized and polymerized lipidsFish meal; poultry byproducts, krill meal
Histamine and putrescineFish meal, primarily tuna
NitrosaminesFish meal

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