Q: What are the Goals of the F3 Contest
A: The F3 Fish-Free Feed Challenge aims to encourage the scaling of alternative aquafeeds free of fishmeal and fish oils through harnessing innovation in the private sector. To scale, alternative aquafeeds need to be of high quality and cost-competitive. The F3 prize encourages formulators to utilize additional ingredients that are cost effective while providing the nutritional needs of the fish without sacrificing food safety or product quality.
This prize is intended to increase the options available for alternative protein sources since the supply of wild caught fish and in particular, forage fish such as menhaden, and sardines, is at risk.
Q: Who can win the contest?
A: The F3 Fish-free feed prize of $200,000 USD will be awarded to the first team to produce and sell 100,000 metric tons (MT) of aquafeeds that do not contain marine animal meal or oil by Sept. 15, 2017. If none of the contestants have met the 100,000 MT target by Sept. 15, 2017, the prize will go to the company closest to the target.
The aquaculture feeds sold for a variety of aquacultured species (e.g. salmon, tilapia, carp, catfish) will be considered towards the 100,000 MT goal as long as they are free of fishery products and by-products. It is assumed that if sales volumes are high, the product must have met aquafeed requirements.
Q: Who is sponsoring the contest?
A: The F3 Challenge is sponsored by the Monterey Bay Aquarium, New England Aquarium, University of Arizona and World Bank.
Q: What is the contest timeline?
● Nov. 2015—The F3 Challenge was launched on the HeroX crowdfunding site.
● Sept. 30, 2016—Contestants were required to submit a guaranteed analysis and ingredient list for their ‘seafood-free’ aquaculture feed sample.
● Jan. 9-11, 2017 – Contestants given opportunity to pitch their feeds to large, global aquaculture companies
● Jan. 15, 2017—First sales submission deadline for contestant teams to submit sales numbers and customer lists for their qualifying feeds for the period of May 1 – Dec. 31, 2016.
● April 15, 2017—Second sales submission deadline for contestant teams to submit sales numbers and customer lists for their qualifying feeds for the period of Jan. 1– March 31, 2017. This is also the deadline for contestants to submit additional feeds for verification that can count towards their sales totals.
● July 15, 2017—Third sales submission deadline for contestant teams to submit sales numbers and customer lists for their qualifying feeds for the period of April 1 – June 30, 2017.
● Sept. 15, 2017—Final Sales Submission Deadline for contestant teams to submit sales numbers and customer lists for their qualifying feeds for the period of July 1 – Sept.15, 2017 and official challenge end date.
● Oct. 2017—Announcement of F3 Challenge winner.
Q: Why is the contest timeline a year and a half?
A: The contest timeline mirrors the timeline for the product development cycle for feed. Feed companies developing new products would require up to 5 months after the contest announcement to determine if they could register, plus several months more to formulate samples, and up to eight months more to ramp up sales towards the 100,000 MT sales goal.
Q: Who qualifies to enter the contest?
A: The Challenge was open to companies that brand and sell feed to aquaculture businesses. Those companies can partner with
other companies to meet their sales volume goals.
Q: Why are you not including any aquaculture reprocessed waste materials?
A: Aquaculture by-products, while a responsible source of fish meal and oils, are not allowed in feed formulations due to the difficulty in testing to identify between aquaculture by-products from wild capture fishery products.
Q: What can the aquafeed contain?
A: For sales to qualify and count toward an entrants’ progress in this Challenge, the feed sold must be formulated for use as an aquaculture feed by the end customers; may contain genetically modified plant materials; may contain terrestrial animal by-products; and must not contain any ingredients (meal or oil) consisting of or derived from marine animals, including but not limited to, fish, squid, shrimp, or krill.
Q: How and where were the feed samples analyzed/evaluated to determine qualification?
A: There are three judges for the contest, and they will ensure that the feed samples are appropriately analyzed and evaluated to ensure that the samples qualify for the F3 contest.
Additional FAQs about the F3 Challenge are available at: https://herox.com/F3/faq
About the Contestants
Eight multi-national teams have qualified to participant in the global fish-free feed technology contest and have advanced to the first sales reporting stage of the multi-stage contest to develop fish-free feed for the aquaculture industry.
Contestant teams submitted feeds for shrimp, tilapia, carp, dace and trout.
Why Fish-Free Feed?
United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) reports indicate that by 2030 25 percent less wild-caught seafood will be available than is today and a similar shrinkage will occur in aquaculture unless it can overcome key constraints, including a shortage of fishmeal for feeds.
We are running out of wild-caught fish, and the main source of demand is aquaculture. Seven of the world’s top ten fisheries (by volume) target forage or low trophic level fish, 90 percent of which are processed into fishmeal and fish oil used in aquaculture feeds.
In 2014, 15.8 million tons of wild-caught fish are used each year to make fishmeal and fish oil. These small schooling fish, known as forage fish, include sardines, herring, anchovy and menhaden. 1
A source of the decline in fish stocks is demand for wild fishmeal and oil that typically ends up in feed for aquaculture.
Why is it important that we prevent overfishing of forage fish?
Forage fish are the food for cod, salmon, tuna, dolphins, sharks, seals, sea lions, penguins, sea birds,