Brown shrimp processing waste as a resource for high-value and sustainable aquaculture feeds

In cooperation with Kaesler Nutrition the AWI groups Functional Ecology and Aquaculture Research are investigating the up-valorization potential of brown shrimp processing waste. Apart from the utilisation in aquaculture feeds for tropical shrimp (L. vannamei), the identification and extraction of valuable feedadditives is explored.

The aim of this project is to promote local brown shrimp processing industries by utilizing and adding value to waste streams and efficiently using this natural resource. Through this activity the environmental standards and sustainable aspects of the brown shrimp product as a whole should be improved.

After the catch, brown shrimp are immediately cooked on board and once landed, the majority of the catch is transported to Marocco. Here the shrimp are manually peeled and the send back to northern Europe. The meat of the tail makes up merely 30% of the whole shrimp.The remaining biomass is mostly left unused. This “waste” contains many essential nutrients that could be used in sustainable feed formulations for  aquaculture or as feed additives in the entire animal feed sector.

On the midterm following positive environmental effects should be achieved: 

  • Protection of the natural resources: Local processing and waste stream up-valorization of a MSC-certified fishery. 
  • Consumer protection: Fast processing and short transportation distances minimize usage of preservatives e.g. benzoic acid.
  • Climate protection: Reduction of long transports to north Africa and the associated reduction in CO2 emissions (approx. 5.5 t CO2 per truck and trip)
  • Promoting sustainable aquaculture: A by-product based feed reduces the ecological footprint of shrimp farmed in recirculating aquaculture systems. This promotes local and sustainable shrimp production

The catch of fresh brown shrimp is cooked directly on board 


Dried processing waste from brown shrimp


The final step: producing feed pelets für aquaculture