Sustainable fish food production is crucial for aquaculture. Microalgae, such as spirulina (Arthrospira platensis), can supplement diet antioxidants or replace expensive fishmeal with high-quality proteins. In this study, we tested fish growth and wellbeing by feeding fish on a diet in which 5% of fishmeal was replaced by spirulina (SP5 diet). The low level of spirulina in the diet was intended as supplementation and was effective in ameliorating the redox state of a model fish species (juvenile Koi Carp, Cyprinus carpio L.) in a preliminary lab protocol in a six-week trial. When compared with both the control diet (no Spirulina) and a diet containing 30% spirulina replacing fishmeal (SP30 diet), SP5 was able to reduce the muscle levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS), oxidative damage, and susceptibility to oxidative stress, while increasing glutathione reductase and peroxidase activity. However, high production costs and impacts still limit the use of spirulina in fish diet. Recent studies focused on growing spirulina on urban or agro-industrial wastewater, with appropriate profiles for the alga growth. Therefore, in a circular economy context, a possibility still to be tested and exploited is feeding farmed fish with spirulina produced on output wastewater recirculated back from the same farming plant. Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) was applied to estimate the sustainability of such “circular” fish farming. The LCA ReCiPe Midpoint (H) impact assessment method was used. Firstly, the LCA environmental impacts associated with the production of spirulina grown on aquaculture wastewater as well as on the standard culture medium (Zarrouk medium) were assessed and compared by means of a “gate to gate” analysis. Then, the LCA impacts of an SP5 diet for fish, in which spirulina grown on aquaculture wastewater was used to replace 5% fishmeal (SP5ww), were compared to the diet containing spirulina grown on a standard medium (SP5st) and that one without spirulina (control diet). Results indicated that SP5ww was significantly less impacting, by avoiding the treatment and disposal of wastewater and the need for the highly impacting standard culture medium. In conclusion, the proposed approach for using spirulina in aquaculture represents a valid solution for aquaculture circular economy scenario while at the same time improving fish welfare.

Towards sustainable aquaculture systems: Biological and environmental impact of replacing fishmeal with Arthrospira platensis (Nordstedt) (spirulina)

Gaetana Napolitano
;
Paola Venditti;Claudio Agnisola;Gianluca Fasciolo;
2022

Abstract

Sustainable fish food production is crucial for aquaculture. Microalgae, such as spirulina (Arthrospira platensis), can supplement diet antioxidants or replace expensive fishmeal with high-quality proteins. In this study, we tested fish growth and wellbeing by feeding fish on a diet in which 5% of fishmeal was replaced by spirulina (SP5 diet). The low level of spirulina in the diet was intended as supplementation and was effective in ameliorating the redox state of a model fish species (juvenile Koi Carp, Cyprinus carpio L.) in a preliminary lab protocol in a six-week trial. When compared with both the control diet (no Spirulina) and a diet containing 30% spirulina replacing fishmeal (SP30 diet), SP5 was able to reduce the muscle levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS), oxidative damage, and susceptibility to oxidative stress, while increasing glutathione reductase and peroxidase activity. However, high production costs and impacts still limit the use of spirulina in fish diet. Recent studies focused on growing spirulina on urban or agro-industrial wastewater, with appropriate profiles for the alga growth. Therefore, in a circular economy context, a possibility still to be tested and exploited is feeding farmed fish with spirulina produced on output wastewater recirculated back from the same farming plant. Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) was applied to estimate the sustainability of such “circular” fish farming. The LCA ReCiPe Midpoint (H) impact assessment method was used. Firstly, the LCA environmental impacts associated with the production of spirulina grown on aquaculture wastewater as well as on the standard culture medium (Zarrouk medium) were assessed and compared by means of a “gate to gate” analysis. Then, the LCA impacts of an SP5 diet for fish, in which spirulina grown on aquaculture wastewater was used to replace 5% fishmeal (SP5ww), were compared to the diet containing spirulina grown on a standard medium (SP5st) and that one without spirulina (control diet). Results indicated that SP5ww was significantly less impacting, by avoiding the treatment and disposal of wastewater and the need for the highly impacting standard culture medium. In conclusion, the proposed approach for using spirulina in aquaculture represents a valid solution for aquaculture circular economy scenario while at the same time improving fish welfare.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11588/895061
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