BioMar purchases AQ1 Systems, adds AlgaPrime DHA production in Tasmania
Brande, Denmark-based aquafeed supplier BioMar has acquired AQ1 Systems, a maker of acoustic feeding technology for the shrimp-farming industry.
Post-acquistion, AQ1 will maintain its own operations, business systems, and distribution channels, servicing both BioMar customers and customers with other feed providers, according to AQ1 Founder and Managing Director Ross Dodd, who will continue to lead AQ1 after the sale is completed.
“We very much look forward to the collaboration with BioMar and [its] parent company, Schouw & Co., [which has] significant investments in electronic and mechanical engineering. We believe this will enable us to develop new markets and create value from an extensive combined knowledge base and global reach. At the same time, we have a mutual interest in supporting the growth of the industry. I am sure, the new alliance will open many possibilities for technological innovation, which will benefit farmers around the world,” Dodd said.
BioMar CEO Carlos Diaz said the purchase comes following his firm’s successful entrance into the shrimp feed-market, and was conducted to create new synergies between farming technologies and feed solutions.
“We have a strong belief that we can bring together knowledge and tech innovation, offering new advantageous solutions to our customers improving feeding efficiency and sustainability. By optimizing feeding practises, combining intelligent feeding systems, comprehensive analytics, advanced feed solutions, and effective farm management, we can take yet another step in the right direction,” Diaz said. “During the last years, we have seen that the use of intelligent feeders in shrimp farming can optimize feed efficiency, production yield, and sustainability, when introduced along data-driven farm management. Adding BioMar feed solutions and technical knowledge to the equation opens new opportunities.”
Separately, BioMar announced it recently commissioned an operation within its Wesley Vale factory in Tasmania, Australia, specifically dedicated to the production of AlgaPrime DHA. The move as part of a collaboration with Corbion, which has sought to expand sales of the alternative aquafeed ingredient made from algae grown from sugar cane.
“AlgaPrime DHA is an important ingredient for the future of our feeds and the result of our world-class R&D,” BioMar Australia Technical Director Tom Fox-Smith said. “AlgaPrime DHA has allowed us to successfully break the link between Omega 3 fatty acids and fish oil derived from wild fish stocks. This means we can continue to support Australia’s growing aquaculture sector sustainably by decreasing the amount of wild fish ingredients present in our feeds.”
The system, which was completed in March 2022, will help BioMar Australia make AlgaPrime DHA more widely available in Australia and New Zealand, according to BioMar Australia Managing Director David Whyte.
“We are increasing the amount of fish that can be farmed without increasing pressure on marine resources,” Whyte said. “Reducing the amount of marine ingredients used whilst maintaining the desired amount of omega-3 in the piece of fish you buy has been a juggle until now. This is a real game changer.”
Huon Aquaculture CEO Philip Wiese said the use of AlgaPrime DHA in the aquafeed it uses is helping his company lower its fish-in, fish-out ratio of its salmon-farming operations.
“Huon began utilizing AlgaPrimeDHA in our feed in August 2021 and we have been pleased with the results,” Wiese said. “The addition of algal oil has not impacted the nutritional composition of Huon salmon nor affected fish health, so we are confident it will remain an important sustainable component in the diet of Tasmanian salmon for years to come.”
Photo courtesy of BioMar