Current Articles | Categories | Search

Newsletter February 2015

Fish in your cosmetics? Valorising fisheries by-products

Instead of simply throwing fisheries by-products in the trash, modern commercial fisheries and the fish processing industry fisheries by-products are looking for ways to valorise these by-products. In a multidisciplinary consortium, ILVO will trace the possibilities, opportunities and stumbling blocks for both the industries. Concrete processing possibilities will be investigated by analysing the various by-products, searching for valuable components, developing and testing several applications of certain by-products on a small scale and conducting a socio-economic analysis. Policy advice on maximum valorisation of fisheries by-products can also be provided.

valorevisThe fishing industry in Flanders practices a mixed fishery and has little selectivity, which leads to a large amount of unwanted landings or by-products. The upcoming “landing obligation” from the European Common Fisheries Policy, where fishers will be required to land everything they catch, is likely to increase the amount of fisheries by-products available. Optimal valorisation of these by-products will reduce the amount of waste. The fish processing industry also generates by-products which should be valorised fully. The commercial fisheries and the fish processing industry will be encouraged to work together to valorise these waste streams. Policies will also need to evolve to create optimal valorisation, thus this project will also focus on the evaluation of policy and legal texts regarding by-catch and landing obligations.

Results obtained from the ILVO projects “GeNeSys” and “BETERVIS” will be used to characterise the various by-products originating from the fisheries, fishing trade and fish processing industry. Based on these results a selection will be made of the most essential, most common and most promising by-products, which will then be analysed to a greater extent. The analysis will focus on quantifying valuable components, such as chitosan in shrimp shells. Simultaneously, the needs and interests (nutrients, volumes, supply, time period, safety, etc.) of both the food industry and the feed industry as well as the cosmetics industry will be evaluated. Valorisation possibilities will be assessed for the food industry (stock, condiments, sauce, etc.), the feed industry (such as niche products for hobby animals) and the cosmetics industry. Additionally, possibilities to increase preservation of the by-products will be examined since this plays a crucial role in many of the valorisation pathways. Cost analyses of the different valorisation pathways will also be conducted during the project. It is crucial that the opportunities in utilising by-products from the fisheries create an added value for both the fisherman and the processing industry. A socio-economic analysis is therefore essential. To support the socio-economic analysis, it will be important to examine the financial consequences of the landing obligation from the previously identified by-products form the fisheries.

This project will identify which by-products are most appealing for valorisation (quantitative and nutritional) and which types of valorisation are best suited for this purpose (financial, logistical, preservation, etc.). Furthermore, it will provide an action plan and a list of parameters that companies can use when exploring ways to valorise fisheries by-products.

Funding: The European Commission (EVF – Europees Visserijfonds), The Government of Flanders (FIVA – Financieringsinstrument voor de Vlaamse Visserij- en Aquacultuursector)
Term: May 1 2014 – August 31 2015
Partners: VIVES; KULAK; UGent Campus Kortrijk; eCOAST
Contact: Els Vanderperren, Geertrui Vlaemynck, Mike van 't Land