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The role of fish in animal feeding
Combs, G.F. (1962). The role of fish in animal feeding, in: Heen, E. et al. Fish in nutrition. pp. 43-51
In: Heen, E.; Kreuzer, R. (1962). Fish in nutrition. Fishing News (Books): London. XXIII, 447 pp., more

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  • Combs, G.F.

    An increase in the production of animal feed products can do much to improve the nutritional status of man in many parts of the world. Foods of animal origin, including fish, have exceedingly high quality protein and also are relatively high in many protective nutrients. Properly processed fish meals are excellent protein supplements for animals, and supply unusually high amounts of amino acids, lysine and methionine, most likely to be limiting in rations for poultry and swine. Fish products are also rich in phosphorus, calcium, manganese, iodine, vitamin B12, riboflavin, niacin and choline. Fish oils are rich in vitamins A and D. The major role of fish meal in animal feeding is through the extension of short supplies of protein by providing critical amounts of supplemental lysine and methionine. Under such conditions, as much as 70 per cent of the critically limiting amino acid in the feed may be retained in the production of animal feed products. The actual usage of fish products in animal feeds is largely determined by economics, but levels up to 10 per cent fish meal can be satisfactorily used in starting and laying feeds for poultry and feeds for swine up to 150 pound weights. For swine and turkeys during the finishing period the level should be restricted to 2.5-5.0 per cent to avoid the possibility of off-flavours in the meat. The actual level of fish products used in animal feeds is dependent on several factors including the following: (1) development of intensive swine and poultry industries with increased use of nutritionally balanced complete reeds ; (2) realistic and competitive pricing of fish meal in relation to other available supplements ; (3) availability of fish meal in amounts adequate to insure constant supply; (4) uniformity and level of quality; (5) availability and cost of other protein and amino acid supplements; (6) extent to which nutritional knowledge is applied in animal production. Probably the most serious deterrent to the production of animal rood products for man is the failure fully to apply present technical and scientific knowledge. This includes the sound application of nutritional information in the formulation of feeds designed for specific purposes. This involves the consideration of all aspects of nutrition, and particularly amino acid adequacy where fish products are concemed. It also requires the implementation of other advances, including better management, disease control, use of improved breeds and proper marketing practices if an efficient animal industry is to be realized.

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