Utilization of Soluble Canola Protein Concentrate as an Attractant Enhances Production Performance of Sunshine Bass Fed Reduced Fish Meal, Plant-Based Diets

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Abstract

Soluble canola protein concentrate (SCPC) is rich in glutamic acid and may act as a feed attractant to improve feed acceptance and production performance of fish fed plant-based diets. In the first experiment, attractant properties of SCPC were evaluated by comparing production performance of sunshine bass, Morone chrysops × Morone saxatilis, fed reduced fish meal (FM) diets supplemented with 1% SCPC or a betaine-based feed attractant. In the second experiment, production performance of fish was compared after feeding reduced FM diets with or without SCPC. Following the first experiment, production performance was similar among fish fed attractants, but at 0% FM weight gain and survival were significantly lower compared to the 30% FM control treatment regardless of attractant inclusion. According to broken-line analysis of data from the second experiment, the critical breakpoints in dietary FM inclusion rates needed to achieve maximal weight gain were similar regardless of SCPC. However, weight gain observed among fish fed SCPC was significantly greater than fish not fed SCPC. Including FM in plant-based sunshine bass diets at rates >10–13% dry matter did not improve weight gain, and weight gain is optimized when a feed attractant/palatant such as SCPC is included in these plant-based diets.

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