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HEROY, Norway

Agency: Cordis | Branch: H2020 | Program: SME-2 | Phase: BG-12-2015 | Award Amount: 2.00M | Year: 2016

The SME Planktonic has succeeded in cryopreserving marine crustacean nauplii (hereafter called CryoProduct) in large user-friendly entities, and to revive them as live individuals after thawing. The ease-of-use CryoProduct meets the nutritional requirements of fish larvae. A doubling in growth rate and a 25-30% shortening of the live feed period compared to a diet of the suboptimal live feed diets commonly used at marine hatcheries have been demonstrated (large-scale industrial trial, TRL6). With a well-functioning feeding protocol to be developed in the project period, it is expected that performances of the fish larvae will be even better. It will be put effort on optimizing the cryopreservation protocols to achieve a CryoProduct with even better quality than today for improving the performances of fish juveniles. A bio-security evaluation will be performed, and a screening of microorganisms will be needed for the registration of the CryoProduct. To successfully launch the CryoProduct into the EU market, it will be of major importance to scale up the production, to establish efficient logistic systems, identify end-users needs and to provide a reliable commercialisation plan for the best possible market introduction. As the CryoProduct has outstanding performances compared to todays alternatives, we expect a market share of 50% of the live feed market on a longer term. This corresponds to a revenue of more than 100 million . As the market grows 3-4% per year, the market size will double in about 20 years. It is a considerable aquaculture production in the EU. If the product meet the expectations, it will most probably be a major contribution to realize the production potential of marine fish in aquaculture in the EU. This will result in many thousand new jobs, and primarily in the Mediterranean region. The business innovation project fits well to the business strategy of Planktonic, and to the Horizon2020 SME-2 programme under the topic BG-12-2015.

The most important innovation in marine fish aquaculture is the improvement of survival rate and development during the larval stage of the fish. Reasons are that the current nutritional quality of most common live food organisms (rotifers and Artemia nauplii) is inadequate leading to high mortality, deformations and sub-optimal growth during the larval phase of these fish species which limit the overall production. This projects primary objective is to cryopreserve targeted natural zooplankton harvested from the sea, which will be revived for the use as live feed organisms in marine aquaculture. The SME Planktonic has succeeded in cryopreserving marine crustacean nauplii in relatively large scale (entities of up to 200 ml), and to revive them as free swimming organisms (revival rate up to 90%). Because fish larvae are evolutionary adapted to graze on these plankton organisms, it is believed and also documented that it is an optimal diet with respect to nutritional value and performances on the fish growth and survival. Present cryopreservation protocols owned by Planktonic will be further optimized for large scale fish larvae cultivation of both current successful aquaculture species (sea bream and sea bass) and those with requirements of prey of high nutritive value and appropriate size in their early larval phase (e.g. bluefin tuna, long fin yellow tail and Ballan wrasse). Logistics systems for economically feasible shipping of the cryopreserved product within and outside the EU will be assessed, besides procedures for removing market barriers. The world-wide market of Artemia nauplii and rotifers is estimated to about 450 million . Planktonic is aiming at 10% of this market, which will result in a turnover of 45 million . Planktonic will in the proposed project perform a feasibility study with the focus of a business plan, potential partners to succeed with the commercialization and evaluate different technologies for up-scaling of the production.

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