The growth of the aquafeed market in Europe is driven by the increased consumption of seafood due to the rising awareness about their health benefits, the rise in fish farming, the introduction of new species, and strategies for boosting aquaculture by the European Commission. According to the European Market Observatory for Fisheries and Aquaculture (EUMOFA) report (2021), aquaculture production across the EU grew by 11% between 2010 and 2019, while in terms of value, it grew by 40%. Furthermore, aquafeed production in Europe increased from 17.21 metric tons in 2021 to 17.37 metric tons in 2022 (Source: FAO). An increase in the production of fish, increasing seafood trade, and the rising consumption of fish boost the demand for aquafeed in Europe. The upsurge in the aquafeed and aquaculture production industry can be attributed to the corresponding rise in the demand for Nannochloropsis in the region.
Nutrition influences the growth, reproduction, and health of fish and their response to physiological and environmental stress and pathogens. Fish utilize protein preferentially over lipids or carbohydrates as an energy source. Dietary protein is the most important factor for the growth of fish. Therefore, it is important from a nutritional and economic standpoint to improve protein utilization for tissue synthesis rather than energy use. Moreover, dietary lipids are a vital source of energy and essential fatty acids necessary for the growth and development of fish.
Nannochloropsis is widely used in aquaculture due to its nutritional value and ability to produce valuable chemical compounds, such as pigments (zeaxanthin, astaxanthin, and canthaxanthin) and polyunsaturated fatty acids (EPA). Nannochloropsis is used in the production of microalgal concentrates for fish hatcheries. Additionally, Nannochloropsis can be used as both protein and lipid source for aquafeeds due to its high protein and lipid content. Nannochloropsis cell mass comprises 50–55% crude protein, which is ideal for a whole-cell ingredient in aquafeeds. Generally, salmonids require 36–38% digestible protein (dry-matter basis) in their diets, although this reduces to 29% for tilapia, an omnivorous fish. Hence, the growing aquaculture industry and the rising demand for protein-rich and lipid-rich aquafeed are expected to drive the growth of the Europe Nannochloropsis market.
In terms of value, the Europe Nannochloropsis market is expected to reach $ 4.79 million by 2030, at a CAGR of 9.0% during the forecast period 2023–2030. In terms of volume, the Europe Nannochloropsis market is expected to reach 39.93 tons by 2030, at a CAGR of 9.6% during the forecast period 2023–2030, according to the latest publication of Meticulous Research®.
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