MicroBalance® -  an advantage driven by research and innovation

At a time when raw material prices are highly volatile, the raw material flexibility of MicroBalance presents a major advantage over traditional aquafeeds. It reduces the aquaculture industry's dependence on raw materials that become too expensive by replacing them with less costly alternatives that maintain the same nutritional values. This unprecedented raw material flexibility ensures we supply aquaculture diets that are both more economically viable and sustainable.

MicroBalance is a concept in ingredient flexiblity and over the years we have developed a number of specific products including MicroBalance FLX, N3 and Infinity, and is about the right nutrients, not specific raw materials.

Tree illlustration Tom Berry

MicroBalance: an innovation in aquafeed production

Aquaculture production will need to more than double between now and 2050 to meet the demands of a growing population. At the same time, we need to reduce the pressure put on the planet’s resources. How can we grow sustainably? Basically, we need to produce more from less. That’s where MicroBalance enters the scene.

Using technology that is based upon our latest understanding of essential micronutrients and how they interact with fish, MicroBalance® allows us to replace one feed raw material with another without impacting performance, welfare or end-product quality.

Crucially, this innovation, which is the result of several years' research conducted by the Skretting Aquaculture Research Centre (ARC), enables us to produce feeds with much lower fishmeal content across several major species.

MicroBalance FLX: A step change in fish feed sustainability

MicroBalance FLX is a ground-breaking concept that can be applied to most of the Skretting feed products for salmonids. It is a formula that allows us to replace all fishmeal with other ingredients, without compromising on the nutritional value of the feed.

Skretting Aquaculture Innovation (AI) has devoted significant resources over the past three decades to exploring the potential for alternative raw materials to replace traditional marine-based feed components, while ensuring the final fish products retain the eating and nutritional qualities that consumers expect. Aligned with this ambition, one of our biggest sustainability objectives has been to develop the  capability to become independent of wild fish. MicroBalance FLX was launched in 2016, and is about the right nutrients, not specific raw materials.

MicroBalance FLX allows us to regulate the amount of fishmeal or other ingredients without compromising on the nutritional value of the feed.

Raw material freedom gives us:

Delivering total performance through optimised growth and health in a sustainable way.

MicroBalance FLX has been made possible through progressive and extensive research at Skretting AI.


Fish illustration Tom Berry
Brain illustration, Tom Berry

N3 - algal oil

Fish oil has historically been essential to aquaculture as it has ensured end products contain the two essential long-chain omega-3 fatty acids eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) that are favored by consumers for their well-known health benefits. While currently in good supply, this marine ingredient is constantly in very high demand from multiple sectors, which in turn limits its market availability and presents a potential future bottleneck challenge in the growth of aquaculture.

Fish oil availability is no longer an obstacle to the expansion of the global aquaculture industry thanks to access to new novel oils containing EPA and DHA.  Skretting feeds containing these alternative oils are called N3. Our N3 concept allows producers to decrease the use of fish oil without compromising the long-chain omega-3 benefits, and the concept can be tailored concept to suit individual needs.

Options could include:

  • Reduced forage fish dependency (FFDR)
  • Lower dioxins and PCBs
  • A higher omega-3 EPA and DHA level without increasing FFDR

Infinity - sustainable aquafeed to meet the global needs

Infinity is our final development of the MicroBalance concept to become completely independent of marine feed raw materials. The Infinity feeds - containing no fish meal or fish oil - require a high level of the MicroBalance technology in combination with access to a new novel omega 3 source, like the microalgae based omega-3 oil. In 2017, Skretting AI proved that Atlantic salmon can be grown from 1 kg to harvest by using Infinity feed, without impacting performance, welfare or fish quality. Infinity thus provides unprecedented formulation flexibility.

Through Infinity, we can help farmers produce Atlantic salmon with a zero fish in, fish out ratio (FIFO) if needed. This important step means that salmon aquaculture can develop independently of the supply and production of marine ingredients from wild-capture fisheries. This will enable a higher utilisation of wild fisheries for direct human consumption if the market requires.

The Infinity feed concept enables the production of a healthy and nutritious salmon for the consumer, without being dependent on finite sources of fish meal and fish oil from wild-capture fisheries.

Earth illustration Tom Berry