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F3 Krill Replacement Challenge: A functional amino acid concept

French company BCF Life Sciences is one of the registrants of the challenge with a tailor-made solution with a unique mix of 17 free amino acids.

Kera Stim 50
September 12, 2023

French company BCF Life Sciences is one of the registrants of the F3 Krill Replacement Challenge with a tailor-made solution with a unique mix of 17 free amino acids (AA), Kera-Stim®50.

“These AAs belong to essential AA and non-essential AA categories. In addition, some of them are also functional AAs, which are defined as those AAs that participate in and regulate key metabolic pathways to improve health, survival, growth, development, lactation, and reproduction of the organisms,” said Pierrick Kersanté, R&D aquaculture manager at BCF Life Sciences.

“The functional amino acid concept has been successfully applied in swine and poultry feed formulation for the last decade. BCF is a pioneer in this matter in aquafeeds. The supplementation of Kera-Stim®50 unique combination on feed provides direct benefits to overcome health challenges in relation to diseases, oxygen transportation, molting management and water quality evolution, but also indirect benefits with strong attractant properties conferring higher feed intake and feed efficiency for shrimp and fish. The conjunction of all these benefits obtained through nutrition becomes in higher survival and biomass production, inducing better economic performances and contributing to reducing the carbon footprint at the end of the value chain,” Kersanté explained.

The product is obtained from extensive hydrolysis (thermal and pH) of a sustainable protein source, the poultry keratin from poultry feathers. “BCF Life Sciences is a pioneer of circular economy based on the Breton poultry-breeding sector, since 1986. Historically, our activities have their roots in the local circular economy (Brittany), and today, the majority of our input materials are considered the co-products of other industries,” Kersanté stated.

The product has been tested in more than 150 studies both in lab and farm scale. “The direct inclusion of Kera-Stim®50 in aquafeeds confers direct benefits on health, feed intake and feed efficiency. These benefits directly contribute to higher survival and growth performances, linked with FCR reduction leading to potential cost savings. In addition, they are part of necessary efforts to reduce the carbon footprint,” Kersanté explained. “We have built this strong database in partnership with more than ten universities and research centers worldwide and published our results in 20 articles and 14 conferences in congresses.”

Kera-Stim®50 is a free-flowing powder easy to handle and apply. The product is highly standardized, stable (2 years of shelf life), and resistant to heating treatment processes, therefore, it can be used in extrusion after direct inclusion into the pellet mix.

“Today, aquafeed production has to face strong challenges regarding ingredient supply and simultaneously take into account economic and environmental constraints. According to our investigations on a fish model, our product offers a competitive solution to replace krill meal in feed formulations regarding the preservation of natural marine resources,” Kersanté stated.

“Despite the important efforts that have been made by the aquafeed industry to replace marine ingredients with alternative materials, mainly of vegetal origin, shrimp and fish feed still consume an important part of marine-origin products, such as fishmeal and krill meal,” Kersanté said. “The F3 Krill Replacement Challenge is completely online with our objective to be in the heart of the circular economy and confer sense, valor, and carbon footprint reduction to the whole chain of production.”

Don't miss interviews with other registrants of the F3 Krill Replacement Challenge:

Entobel: The attraction of insect meal

eniferBio: The power of mycoprotein

JF Nutritech: Could phytonutrients replace krill?

Stratium: Insect protein to replace krill

Symrise Aqua Feed: Land-based byproducts

Protenga: An insect-based palatability enhancer

Nutrition Technologies: A new insect-based approach

CCYAA Chile: A microalgae oil

Shaivaa Algaetech: A mix of microalgae

Palmatech Product: A palm oil concentrate

dsm-firmenich: A palatable protein ingredient

Maltento: An insect digest