Jackfruit could be another source of plant origin to replace fishmeal in tilapia
2017-02-10 19:06:48   copyfrom:    hits:

Tilapia feed developed from jackfruit seedsMEXICOFriday, February 10, 2017,00:00 (GMT + 9)A team of researchers fro


Tilapia feed developed from jackfruit seeds

Click on the flag for more information about MexicoMEXICO 
Friday, February 10, 2017, 00:00 (GMT + 9)


A team of researchers from the Autonomous University of Nayarit (UAN) is studying the production of a food for tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) from jackfruit seeds, to reduce costs and substitute products of animal origin.

According to the doctor in biotechnology of food for aquaculture nutrition Francisco Javier Valdez Gonzalez, the aim is to find sources of vegetal origin to replace fish meal, due to its greater availability and lower cost.

"In Nayarit, 70 per cent of the producers' expenses go to feed, even beyond the payment of electricity or fuel, so they seek to reduce feed costs to the maximum," the researcher said in an interview with Conacyt news agency.

The municipality of San Blas, where the university campus is located, is the main producer of jackfruit (Artocarpus heterophyllus). Local producers sell the pulp and discard the seeds, but the team of researchers led by Dr. Valdez discovered through a chemical analysis that the seeds contain 20 per cent of proteins, lipids and carbohydrates, so it was decided to try it as feed.

Various tests were performed to process the jackfruit seeds so as to obtain a suitable feed for tilapia. The aim was "To see the level of digestion of that protein by tilapias," the researcher explained.

The husk was removed from the seeds, in order to reduce the amount of fiber and to favour the fattening of the fish. Tannins or antinutrients, which are in the husks of any seed or fruit, and which inhibit the digestion of food, were also eliminated.

In addition, other antinutrients, such as trypsin and antitrypsin inhibitor factors, were removed through extrusion method - a process of heating flour - to make the protein available, via breaking the bonds and enzymes, so it can be easily unfolded by organisms.

"The seed was tested with husk, without husk and with extruded husk to compare if the tilapias grew in the same way as with the traditional feed, and we were surprised that the diets of our treatment, extruded and without husk, yielded a performance similar to that of commercial feed, made from fishmeal, "explained Dr. Valdez.

During the experiment, one kilogram of commercial feed containing fishmeal and wheat flour, vitamins, minerals, fish oil and soy lecithin was replaced with 30 per cent jackfruit seed.

The results obtained over a year of studies indicated that with the addition of this proportion of jackfruit "there is no difference in the effects compared to the commercial diet," said the researcher.

The team will continue to study this product until the inclusion rate of the seed - without affecting the productive variables - is total. Anyway, Dr. Valdez considers that if they achieve optimization with 50 per cent, it would be feasible to start using the product on farms that request it.


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