Value chain partnership to deliver insect-fed rainbow trout in Finnish market

For the first time in Finland, a small share of traditional feed ingredients will be partially replaced with sustainable insect meal.

June 18, 2024

Four companies have partnered to bring a trial batch of rainbow trout to the Finnish markets that have been fed with an insect ingredient. Bringing novel sustainable protein ingredients to fish diets is important as ingredients are the source of most environmental impacts in the rainbow trout value chain. A trial batch of approximately 150,000 kg of rainbow trout will be fed with the new feed and will be available to consumers in winter 2024-2025.

This unique collaboration in the Finnish aquaculture industry involves Kalavapriikki, Kalankasvatus Vääräniemi, Alltech Fennoaqua and Volare. Together, they are launching, for the first time in Finland, a new concept where a small share of traditional feed ingredients are partially replaced with sustainable insect meal. Volare farms insects at its Hyvinkää facility, producing high-quality protein meal. Alltech Fennoaqua manufactures the feed at its Raisio factory, Kalankasvatus Vääräniemi farms the rainbow trout, and Kalavapriikki handles distribution.

Initially, the insect meal inclusion rate is limited to facilitate testing in a real-world commercial setting. “We are renewing the industry step by step through strong partnerships across the value chain. This is just the first step with significant future potential,” said Tomi Kantola, CEO at Alltech Fennoaqua.

Volare produces black soldier fly larvae meal by upcycling food industry side streams. “Insects are a part of rainbow trout’s natural diet and have significant environmental benefits over conventional feed ingredients. Volare has a unique approach to production, with significant energy savings, non-fossil production and zero waste,” highlighted Jarna Hyvönen, chief commercial officer at Volare.

“Our customers want tangible sustainability actions. We have learned that the best concrete steps forward include many parties in the value chain - no one can do this alone. It is really inspiring to work with Vääräniemi and Fennoaqua, with whom we are continually re-inventing the fish industry in Finland to serve our customers even better,” said Jari Korhonen, CEO at Kalavapriikki.

The trial batch of rainbow trout products will be available to consumers throughout Finland in autumn 2024.

Volare was founded in 2021 and will start building the first industrial-scale plant in 2024 in Southern Finland. The production capacity is an estimated 5,000 tons of protein meal annually and the facility will use a mixture of different side streams from the food industry as feedstock.