Independent scientific research for the benefit of New Zealand.

King salmon feed conversion efficiency (FCE)

A ground-breaking king salmon research programme is underway at Cawthron Institute. This programme aims to improve understanding of processes that influence king salmon’s feed conversion; this will aid industry performance, profitability, and sustainability.

The research follows three broad themes; the indicators of healthy king salmon, on farm performance and environmental interactions, and improving performance and efficiency. The programme covers many aspects of king salmon; behavioural, fish health, gut bacteria, genetics, blood biochemistry, and metabolite profiles. Bringing all this information together is part of a new research area called integrating systems biology.

In 2018 experimental trials will begin in a purpose built multi-million dollar facility at the Cawthron Aquaculture Park. In the trials individual fish will be tagged, tracked, and measured; allowing scientists to gain understand how each fish responds to changes in its environment and feed. Ultimately the king salmon feed efficiency programme will equip farmers with the knowledge needed to improve on farm production, supporting the future growth of this sustainable industry.

Funder: The Ministry for Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE).

Partners and collaborators: Industry are providing vital input by sharing their priorities and challenges with the research team, as well as data, staff and infrastructure, and fish for sampling. We’re also working with universities, feed companies, and other science organisations.

For more information please contact Jane Symonds.

News stories:
Research fit for a king (salmon)
Research aims to improve king salmon feeding efficiency

Understanding King Salmon

By increasing understanding of processes that influence King Salmon performance, farming will become more efficient.