IFFO’s China webinar held on 29th and 30th November 2022 explored the latest insights on fishmeal and fish oil market trends

IFFO’s China webinar held on 29th and 30th November 2022 explored the latest insights on fishmeal and fish oil market trends, with specific focuses on China, Peru, Mexico and Europe.

The key takeaways are available here.

Opening the webinar, IFFO’s Director General Petter Martin Johannessen underlined the important role that marine ingredients play in supporting the growth of aquaculture as the most effective way to produce protein, with half of the raw material already certified as being responsibly sourced.  IFFO’s China Director, Maggie Xu, highlighted the capacity for marine ingredients to contribute to food security moving forward. In 2020, based of FAO and IFFO data, marine ingredients contributed to the production of 7kg of fish per capita. 30 to 40 million tons of additional feed ingredients are estimated to be needed in aqua feed globally by 2030. 

A resilient industry

IFFO’s Market Research Director, Enrico Bachis, insisted on the resilience of the industry: with just over 5 million metric tonnes of fishmeal and 1.2 million metric tonnes of fish oil, 2021 production was actually in line with that of previous years. The sector is able to maximise precious raw material: 30% of the raw material used worldwide to produce fishmeal and fish oil comes from by-products. According to TripleNine’s Chief Sales Officer, Jon Tarlebø, production of fishmeal in Europe over the last few years has been around 600,000 metric tons, with a good part of production coming from salmon trimmings. 

Well managed fisheries

IFFO’s Technical Director Brett Glencross reported FAO’s announcement earlier in 2022 that 65% of global fish stocks were considered well managed, which represented more than 80% of the global fisheries biomass. Importantly, recent studies have clearly demonstrated that when effective fisheries management is put in place, there is clear capacity to rebuild fish stocks. James Frank, Director at MSICeres, shed a light on Peru’s, fishmeal and fish oil industry, based on 82 plants (industrial and residual plants). The quota set by the Peruvian authorities on the 23rd November 2022 for the second fishing season of anchovy and white anchovy in the North-Centre of the country is at 2.283 million tons, which is 33% of the biomass. “The quota indicates a healthy biomass”, said Enrico Bachis.

Exceptional nutritional properties

Fishmeal and fish oil are both regarded as unique ingredients, Dr Brett Glencross noted. Fish oil provides unique and unmatched levels of EPA and DHA. Fishmeal has a near perfect balance of amino-acids and also provides bioactive factors. Taking a deep dive into Antarctic krill meal, Aker BioMarine’s Helen Yu, introduced krill as a complex of nutrients important for growth and health of fish/shrimp.

Focus on Asia

Asia and China provide more than 80% of the farmed fish worldwide, they consume 70% of the marine ingredients used in aquaculture, but only 30% of the fish oil is used in aquafeed, Enrico Bachis explained. Focusing on China, Asso. Prof. at Shanghai Ocean University, Wenbo Zhang, insisted that China is the largest aquaculture producer in the world, with the production accounting for about 60% of the global aquaculture production.

China is a big fishmeal consumer, Dr.Xia Fan, Executive Deputy Director of China National Feed Quality Inspection and Testing Center (Beijing), explained. Its domestic fishmeal production is low, therefore main high-quality feed fishmeal is imported. “It is of great significance to strengthen the safety access and risk analysis of fishmeal to promote the healthy development of feed production, animal husbandry and aquaculture in China”, she insisted.

Focus on Mexico

According to Armando Coppel, of Maz Industrial, Mexico contributes 1.35% to the world’s catch. The small pelagic fishery in Mexico began in the 20th century on the northwestern coast and later in the state of Sinaloa in 1972. Currently, activities in the small pelagics fishery are carried out with a total of 94 active vessels and catch <750,000 tons/year.


The video recordings of the event are available here.