Dr. Alexandros Samartzis, Regional Technical Sales Manager, Evonik (SEA)
Alexandros Samartzis1, Dhanapong Sangsue1, Cláudia Figueiredo-Silva2 and Girish Channarayapatna1
1Animal Nutrition, Evonik Industries, Singapore; 2Animal Nutrition, Evonik Industries, Germany;
Aquaculture is one of the fastest growing industries in the world. In 2013, total aquaculture production was 97.2 million tonnes globally that translates to 157.27 billion US$ with an annual percentage rate of 8.1% per annum. While Asian aquaculture production contributed to 91.78% of total world production with an impressive growth rate of 6.9% during 2013. In commercial aquaculture practices, feeds are responsible for the biggest share of the production cost which can be up to 80% in many cases. Fish meal (FM) is considered as an excellent source of nutrients (balanced amino acid profiles, essential fatty acids, and mineral content) and for that reason was the key ingredient in aquaculture feeds. Due to its high and increasing cost, nutritionists emphasize on reducing dependence and finding alternative protein sources to replace FM. Crustaceans attribute for the major share of about 28% of the total use of FM in aquaculture. During the last years, significant information were generated regarding the digestibility of nutrients including amino acids (AA) of practical ingredients. These data, allows the nutritionists to have better understanding of nutrient digestibility coefficients in order to formulate diets that meet the requirements of the defined production target (without being restricted by the limitations that FM imposes). The slow feeding behaviour of crustaceans such as, whiteleg shrimp (Litopenaeus vannamei), is an extra challenge that has to be addressed. The objective of this review is to present the available data on amino acid recommendations and digestibility co-efficients for whiteleg shrimp for an optimal but cost effective diet. The latest numerous up-to-date experimental studies indicate that FM substitution with alternative protein sources do not affect the growth, survival and feed conversion ratio of shrimp, as long as nutrient composition, including amino acid profile, are balanced to cover the specie’s requirements. The digestibility coefficient of crude protein and individual AA of many ingredients will be presented in detail. Finally, all the recent advances in the AA nutrition of shrimp will explained alongside the solutions to the challenges of the complicated feeding behaviour of crustaceans.
Dr. Alexandros Samartzis works for Evonik (SEA) Pte. Ltd. as a Technical Sales Manager for the Southeast Asia region specialized in Aquaculture and based in Singapore. My academic qualifications are; PhD in Aquaculture nutrition from Plymouth University in UK as well as an MRes in applied fish biology and an MBA from the Agricultural University of Athens, Greece.