Submitted to: International Aqua Feed
Publication Type: Review Article
Publication Acceptance Date: September 1, 1998
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: Soybean meal is the most abundant plant protein among all plant feedstuffs and is readily available worldwide at a lower cost than fish meal. In 1996, the total world production of soybean was approximately 133 million metric tons which is about 52% of the total oil seed production. Soybean protein has one of the best amino acid profile among all protein rich plant feedstuffs in meeting the essential amino acid requirements of fish. Raw or non-heated soybeans, however, contain a number of anti-nutritional factors which must be heat inactivated or removed before they are suitable for fish. The nutritional value of defatted soybean meals appears to vary within and among fish species. Many fish species consumed feeds containing high levels of soybean meal, whereas some fish found soybean meal less palatable than fish meal. Generally, under laboratory conditions, total replacement of fish meal by soybean meal resulted in reduced growth and feed efficiency. However, with adequate supplementation of energy, minerals and possibly the sulfur-containing amino acids, properly heated soybean meal should be capable of replacing most of the fish meal in the diets of some species and a significant amount in other species. Currently, soybean meal is the most commonly used plant protein and comprises about 25-50% of the diets of warmwater finfish and 20-35% of the diets of marine shrimp. The nutritional value of heated full-fat soybean meal is at least equal, if not superior, to that of soybean meal reconstituted with soybean oil.