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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Auburn, Alabama » Aquatic Animal Health Research » Research » Research Project #443123

Research Project: Manufacturing of Bioactive Materials from Biomass as Functional Feed Additives for Aquatic Animals

Location: Aquatic Animal Health Research

Project Number: 6010-32000-027-021-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Sep 15, 2022
End Date: Sep 14, 2025

To activate functional compounds of various biomass (industrial and agricultural) innovatively and cost effectively through scalable and easy to implement processes. These compounds will be screened for use in the context of fish and shellfish production in traditional aquaculture/aquaponics systems.

There has been a significant increase in reports in recent literature on antibiotic alternatives and feed additives to promote growth, enhance gut health, and reduce the use of antibiotics in fish and shrimp production. The classes of antibiotic alternatives that are available to increase fish and shrimp productivity include probiotics, organic acids, phytogenics, prebiotics, synbiotics, enzymes, antimicrobial peptides, hyperimmune egg antibodies, bacteriophages, clay, and metals. We will activate functional compounds of various biomass including citrus, onion and garlic peels by thermochemical and/or mechanical (nano) treatment and to use them as an alternative to antibiotics and/or antioxidants in fish and shrimp feed. We aim to use scalable, easy to implement, well established processes and equipment. Extraction and purification processes are avoided as much as possible to reduce the production cost and complications in the technology implementation. Full or close to full utilization of biomass with no to little effluent generation is also one of the main project objectives. Thermochemical processing parameters involve time, temperature and pH of the treatment and these parameters will be optimized to maximize utilization of biomass and minimize the cost of manufacture. In this research project, treatment time will be varied between 30 minutes and 121 minutes, while treatment temperature will be varied between 40 and 120 °C, pH of the treatment will be varied between 3.5 and 10. Even though treatment pressure will generally be kept under atmospheric pressure, we will also try 15 psi. Mechanical treatment involves the fine grinding followed by ultra-fine friction grinding (Masuko) and/or microfluidizer treatment for maximum activation. Number of passes at the ultra-fine friction grinding and or microfluidizer will be varied between 1 and 10 at a set stone opening (Masuko) or pressure (microfluidizer). Thermochemical and mechanical treatments can be used alone or the combination of the two treatments can be used together depending on the processing needs of each biomass.