Starfish factory with high quality protein
Danish Marine Protein is a good example of the ingredient industry's contribution to Agriculture & Food's vision of climate neutrality in 2050.
The newly opened factory in Skive produces a unique form of animal feed protein, which at the same time benefits the local community and the environment. Read on and find out how the innovative company Danish Marine Protein works and where the director Niels Jørgen H. Madsen sees collaboration and development opportunities.
Unique marine proteins
What produces Danish Marine Protein and where is it used?
Niels Jørgen Madsen: We produce protein for organic animals - primarily piglets and chickens for egg laying. It is produced by freshly caught starfish from the Limfjord, which is then made into protein. The finished product is used for animal feed and is used in the immediate area. We are also looking at processing linseed mussels from breeding in the Limfjord. They are used right now for human consumption, but can also be used for animal protein.
For the benefit of the immediate area
What does sustainability mean to you?
Niels Jørgen Madsen: It means a lot. We help the environment in collaboration with agriculture. Our production helps to tackle the mussel fishermen with a major problem, as starfish coarsely clams. At the same time, it is not necessary to import protein feed from e.g. China because it is possible to get locally produced quality protein.
Production solves several environmental challenges
How do you contribute to the goal that the food industry should be climate neutral by 2050?
Niels Jørgen Madsen: We remove nitrogen from our environment in the form of starfish and turn them into beneficial proteins. It means a lot to us that it goes hand in hand with the environment and that we can create a healthy business while also making good sense for the environment. We contribute to the circular bioeconomy by solving several environmental challenges simultaneously and producing for use in the immediate area.
Increased focus on quality protein
What market trends do you see opportunities in?
Niels Jørgen Madsen: It becomes important to make good proteins as you become more aware of the quality of the raw materials, whether you look at conventional or organic farming. We lack nutrients for animals in the form of protein, and it can also drip down on providing nutrients for fertilizers.
Better utilization of skills and raw materials in the fishing industry
In what areas could you imagine partnering with other companies in the ingredient sector?
Niels Jørgen Madsen: We would very much like to get 2 + 2 to give 5 by using each of our competencies to jointly contribute to the value chain. We already cooperate on seaweed products, which are available in larger quantities for the feed industry. Marine products all have good value substances, amino acids and fatty acids, which means they are beneficial to both humans and animals. We could imagine working with fish cuts from the food industry that could be processed into animal feed proteins and applied that way. We have also looked at crabs as we have them in the Danish waters - it can be a bit difficult to work with, though. We also see shrimp shells, as they are not used optimally today. In addition, we are working to extract vegetable protein from grass in collaboration with West Jutland's Share, which owns the majority shareholding in Danish Marine Protein.
Author: Anemette Hansen