Disruptive and forward-looking opportunities for competitive and sustainable aquaculture

INvertebrateIT Open Contest winners announced

On Friday 9 March, an international jury of experts gathered at CETGA (Aquaculture Technology Centre; www.cetga.org) to evaluate the eleven submissions to the INvertebrateIT Open Contest. Three projects were identified as the three most promising, investible projects offering innovative solutions for invertebrate production for sustainable fish feeds, competitive aquaculture and integrated waste management, across the EU Atlantic Basin.

The projects were:

The ‘IPATAC’ (Insect products to address the aquafeed challenge) project is led by France-based InnovaFeed (http://innovafeed.com/), a biotech company that produces high-quality protein for aquaculture from the black soldier fly (Hermetia illucens). They will also be launching the first fish that has been fed with insect protein in European supermarkets this summer and hope to benefit from INvertebrateIT’s coaching opportunities to build a consumer-focused marketing campaign.

Owned by Ingredient Odyssey, Portugal-based ‘EntoGreen’ (http://www.entogreen.com) is focused on introducing a circular economy to the agrifood sector. As IPATAC, Entogreen are interested in the black solider fly, using insect larvae to produce organic fertilizers and animal nutrition, including novel fish product lines. EntoGreen are scaling up their capabilities to a full-scale production plant in Portugal and are investigating opportunities in other regions.

Based in Spain, Mariscos Punta Sinas is leading ‘MUSFLOUR’, a project focused on the valorisation of mussel waste to produce seafood flours. The project is exploring the potential to use residues from the mussel industry to obtain flour that can be used in fish farm feed. MUSFLOUR is currently entering a large-scale testing phase where the product will be tested on a commercial fish farm and hopes to respond to two problems: waste management and a lack of raw materials.

Over the next twelve months, the INvertebrateIT project partners will work with the projects providing them with focused resource, tailored capacity building and providing access to investment support services, intending to boost the investment readiness level of each project to a pre-commercial level.

The INvertebrateIT project would like to congratulate all of the winners and those that submitted applications. It was agreed by the evaluators that the quality and quantity of the submissions exceeded their expectations and shows promise for this new and exciting sector.