Use of fishmeal and fish oil reduces carbon footprint of farmed fish


Substituting plant-based feed ingredients in fish feed with marine ingredients, such as fishmeal and fish oil, can reduce the carbon footprint from farmed fish.

This is highlighted in a new study from the Norwegian independent research institute SINTEF, which has recently analyzed and compared greenhouse gas emissions of different types of seafood and land based food in Norway.

The significant land use, transport and production requirements of plant-based ingredients lead to increasing greenhouse gas emissions for farmed fish when the feed is increasingly based on plant ingredients.

– During the last 10 years there has been a change in the diet of farmed fish towards a feed consisting of almost 70 percent plant-based. That is a development that is not necessarily great from a climate perspective, if it means replacing marine ingredients with Brazilian soy. Changing the composition of the ingredients in the feed has the largest potential to reduce the carbon footprint of farmed salon, says Ulf Winther, special advisor from SINTEF.

As follows from the figure below, farmed salmon is producing the lowest green house gas emissions together with chicken, while pork has around 50% higher emissions and beef 5 times the relative amount. The wild caught fish have the lowest footprints, and especially the pelagic fish, constituting the base for fishmeal and oil, have a very low relative emission level. The more marine ingredients in the feed for the farmed salmon the lower the footprint.

These conclusions are very relevant and feed well into the ongoing discussion of replacing marine ingredients in fishfeed with plant based ingredients .

We believe that combining these results with other studies showing an increase in animal welfare, fitness, survival and quality in the farmed fish when using a larger share of marine ingredients in feed prove that the trend of not using marine ingredients in fish feed should be stopped.

In the wild, fish eat fish and it is only natural that their feed should contain marine ingredients.

On top of being beneficial for the fish, their welfare and health, the nutritional value of the fish reaching the consumer, now also has a reduced carbon footprint compared to a plant-based diet.

You can read the full report from SINTEF here (in Norweigan)

The UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development


The North Atlantic Regional Workshops for the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development 2021-2030 took place on 6-10 January 2020 in Halifax, Canada. The workshops presented an “opportunity to deliver scientific knowledge, foster technological innovation, and build capacity to achieve the 2030 Agenda and reverse the decline of ocean health”. EUfishmeal’s managing director Anne Mette Bæk participated in the workshops with approx. 100 other ocean leaders and key stakeholders. Here, they discussed important themes such as ocean science and technology, ocean policy and sustainable development as well as business and industry. The aims of both workshops and discussions were to find methods to meet the six societal objectives of the UN decade:

  • A clean ocean: Sources of pollution are identified, quantified and reduced, and pollutants removed from the Ocean.
  • A predicted ocean: Society has the capacity to understand current and future Ocean conditions, forecast their change and impact on wellbeing and livelihoods.
  • A safe ocean: Human communities are protected from ocean hazards and the safety of operations at sea and on the coast is guaranteed.
  • A sustainably harvested and productive ocean: The provision of food supply and alternative livelihoods are secured.
  • A transparent and accessible ocean: All nations, stakeholders and citizens have access to ocean data and information, technologies and are capable of making informed decisions.

Click on the objectives to read more about the findings from the workshops.


The event aimed to define research priorities for the North Atlantic as well as to define:

  • Existing relevant partnerships/networks/initiatives and potential interested partners
  • Priorities in capacity-development/training
  • Priority themes and topics to be addressed by the Decade
  • Other regional initiatives and meetings to be aligned with the Decade


Overall, the Ocean Decade Alliance aims to engage stakeholders from all sectors and to continuously strengthen the role of science to ensure that decisions are made on a scientific background. It also aims to raise awareness about the project as it is important to communicate scientific solutions to the public and avoid the distribution of misinformation about the industry; data should be openly accessible and sharable. In addition, the Ocean Decade Alliance wants to create a platform for focusing science on providing solutions for ocean sustainability and establish a major network which will stimulate related actions and commitments at all levels.


You can find the programmes and more information about the workshops here:


In June 2020, the UN Oceans Conference in Lisbon will be the initial formal mechanism for announcement of the actual actions which you can read more about here:


Article: Fishmeal sector short of raw material


Read about the recent EUfishmeal conference in the Faroe Islands and the challenges facing the European fishmeal and fish oil industry in Hook & Net:

EUfishmeal conference 2019, conference day 2 and general assembly


Photos from the EUfishmeal biennial conference 2019, Tórshavn, Faroe Islands, 30th of August 2019.

Last day of the conference with a closing session and the general assembly of EUfishmeal.

EUfishmeal conference 2019, gala dinner


Photos from the EUfishmeal biennial conference 2019, Tórshavn, Faroe Islands, 29th of August 2019.

The first conference day was followed by a gala dinner in the Silos in downtown Tórshavn:

EUfishmeal conference 2019, conference day 1


Photos from the EUfishmeal biennial conference 2019, Tórshavn, Faroe Islands, 29th of August 2019.

First day of the conference with opening, control and technical sessions with various presenters.