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Open AccessArticle

Graded Incorporation of Defatted Yellow Mealworm (Tenebrio molitor) in Rainbow Trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) Diet Improves Growth Performance and Nutrient Retention

CECAV (Animal and Veterinary Research Center), Universidade de Trás-os-Montes e Alto Douro, Quinta de Prados, 5001-801 Vila Real, Portugal
ŸNSECT, Genopole-Campus 3/Batiment 2–1, Rue Pierre Fontaine, 91058 Evry, France
SPAROS LDA, Área Empresarial de Marim, 8700-221 Olhão, Portugal
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Present affiliation: Skretting AS, Sjøhagen 3, 4016 Stavanger, Norway.
Animals 2019, 9(4), 187;
Received: 28 February 2019 / Revised: 17 April 2019 / Accepted: 18 April 2019 / Published: 23 April 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Insects: Alternative Protein Source for Animal Feed)
Efforts to find sustainable ingredients for aquaculture feeds have been increasing. Insect meal is a promising and emerging ingredient because insects are part of the natural diet of fish and have a low ecological footprint. Here, we studied the effect of a gradual replacement of fishmeal with insect meal from yellow mealworm on juvenile rainbow trout performance. Overall, fish grew faster with the incorporation of the insect meal in the feed, and their capacity to convert feed into fish biomass also increased. The retention of ingested key nutrients also increased with the incorporation of insect meal in the feed. In summary, juvenile trout fed an insect-based diet grew faster and required lower feed intake to grow than juvenile trout fed on a common diet with standard levels of fishmeal. These results support the transition of fishmeal to insect meal in aquafeeds, which will improve the sustainability of the aquaculture industry.
Insects are emerging as a sustainable alternative to fishmeal and fish oil in aquafeeds. This study assessed the effect of graded incorporation levels of defatted yellow mealworm (Tenebrio molitor) protein meal on juvenile rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) growth performance, body composition, and apparent nutrient digestibility. The trial comprised five dietary treatments: control diet with 25% fishmeal, and four experimental diets with yellow mealworm protein meal at 5%, 7.5%, 15%, or 25%, which corresponded to a fishmeal replacement of 20%, 30%, 60%, or 100%, respectively. After 90 days, the graded incorporation of insect protein meal led to a significant stepwise increase in final body weight, and a significant improvement of specific growth rate, feed conversion ratio, and protein efficiency ratio compared to the control treatment. Regardless of the incorporation level, the insect protein meal had no effects on fish whole-body composition and apparent digestibility coefficients of dry matter, protein, fat, phosphorus, and energy. Protein, phosphorus, and energy retention significantly increased in fish fed the diets with an insect protein meal. In conclusion, the yellow mealworm protein meal could effectively replace 100% of fishmeal in the diet of juvenile rainbow trout with positive effects on its overall zootechnical performance. View Full-Text
Keywords: fishmeal; insect meal; mealworm; rainbow trout; growth performance; digestibility fishmeal; insect meal; mealworm; rainbow trout; growth performance; digestibility
MDPI and ACS Style

Rema, P.; Saravanan, S.; Armenjon, B.; Motte, C.; Dias, J. Graded Incorporation of Defatted Yellow Mealworm (Tenebrio molitor) in Rainbow Trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) Diet Improves Growth Performance and Nutrient Retention. Animals 2019, 9, 187.

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