Royal DSM and Evonik has announced their intention to establish a joint venture for omega-3 fatty acid products from natural marine algae for animal nutrition. This breakthrough innovation will, for the first time, enable the production of omega-3 fatty acids for animal nutrition without using fish oil from wild caught fish, a finite resource. Evonik and DSM’s alternative omega-3 source is the first to offer both EPA and DHA and will be aimed at initial applications in salmon aquaculture and pet food.
The companies will together build a commercial-scale production facility in the United States, which will be built at an existing site of Evonik and is expected to come on stream in 2019. The initial annual production capacity will meet roughly 15% of the total current annual demand for EPA and DHA by the salmon aquaculture industry.
Evonik’s and DSM’s highly concentrated algal oil is a high value and pure source that will enable the animal nutrition industry to keep up with the increasing demand for these two essential omega-3 fatty acids without endangering fish stocks, contributing to healthy animal nutrition as well as to the ecological balance and biodiversity of the oceans.
Both companies will jointly worked on the development of products and the manufacturing process and explored opportunities for commercialization. Positive results are achieved in the development of the product while extensively working with the entire value chain, including fish feed producers, fish farmers and retailers.
DSM has expertise in the cultivation of marine organisms including algae and long-established biotechnology capabilities in development and operations, whilst Evonik’s focus has been on developing industrial biotechnology processes and operating competitively large-scale manufacturing sites for fermentative amino acids.
Innovation breakthrough for aquaculture, pet food and beyond
Worldwide fish oil production is approximately one million metric tons per year. Most of the fish oil is used in aquaculture, mainly for fat-rich fish species, such as salmon. The limited wild fish stocks restrict the amount of fish oil available and thus the growth of the aquaculture industry. Currently, the industry uses about 75% of the annual production of fish oil. Evonik and DSM’s algal oil will offer a sustainable non-fish alternative.
The new algal oil can be applied in feed production in the same way as fish oil, it can easily be introduced by feed and pet food producers.