News

Viggó Þór Marteinsson honored by the French Embassy

The scientist Viggó Þór Marteinsson received the floor National Order of Merit.

Viggó studied biology at the University of Iceland and graduated with a BS degree. He went to France for postgraduate studies and defended his doctoral dissertation at the Université de Bretagne Occidentale in early 1997. Viggó is a specialist in microbiology and professor at the Faculty of Food and Nutrition at the University of Iceland as well as being a professional leader in research and innovation at Matís ohf.

After completing his doctorate from the Université de Bretagne Occidentale, he has collaborated well with the French scientific community. This connection has led to many French students coming to Iceland and working for longer and shorter periods on projects that have been part of their projects for a master's or doctoral degree.

"Although some have completed or are completing doctoral studies under my supervision at the University of Iceland and have worked on their research projects at research institutes such as Matís," says Viggó. "Some of these students have been here for a long time after their studies and have research positions at Matís. This successful co-operation between the nations in the field of science continues and I firmly believe that it will be strengthened in the future. "

The word was published on November 20, 2020, but due to Covid-19, the word was given on June 9, 2021.

Matís sincerely congratulates Viggó on the word.

News

Nordic Salmon workshop

contact

Gunnar Þórðarson

Regional Manager

gunnar.thordarson@matis.is

A workshop on salmon farming was held on 27 October Ölfus Cluster, Hafnarberg 1, 815 Þorlákshöfn.

The topics of the workshop were:

  • Future feed preparation for salmon farming
  • Future response to lice problems in marine fires
  • Cultivation of juveniles in a controlled environment on land (RAS)

The agenda of the meeting has been attached to the agenda here:

New development in sea- and salmon louse

  1. Lumpfish genetic research: Dr. Ólöf Dóra Bartels Jónsdóttir, Iceland
  2. Fish welfare to prevent sea lice issues: Esbern Patursson, Faroes Islands
  3. Dispersion of sea lice, connection between farms and economic cost: Tróndur Kragesteen, Faroe Islands
  4. Salmon lice biology, Sussie Dalvin, Norway

Feed: New sources and optimal composition for different environments

  1. Special feed production from pelagic production, Sigurjón Arason, Iceland
  2. Salmon Feed: Turid Mørkøre, Norway
  3. Kalle Sinisalo: Research scientist, Finland
  4. Challenges in feed production for salmon in the future, Gunnar Örn Kristjánsson, Iceland

Production of large smolts in hatcheries

  1. Large smolts production: Sigurdur Petursson, Iceland

About the meeting:

The meeting is open to anyone who is interested in salmon farming and wants to get to know the main things that are happening regarding its topics. There has been a lot of discussion about land-based farming, but the cultivation of juveniles is partly land-based farming, where placement in sea cages is shortened but the length of controlled farming on land. It is part of the fight against salmon / fish lice, for example.

Refreshments will be offered at the meeting and payment for ISK will be expected. 3,000. The meeting will be held in English.

The agenda of the meeting is outlined below.

All interested are welcome!


The Nordic Salmon Workshop in Thorlakshofn 27th of October at 08:30

A workshop on salmon farming will be held on October 27 at Ölfus Cluster, Hafnarberg 1, 815 Þorlákshöfn. The meeting starts at 08:30 and ends at 17:00 the same day.

The workshop subjects:

  1. Salmon feed: new sources and optimal composition for different environments
  2. New development in sea- and salmon louse
  3. Production of large smolts in hatcheries
  1. Salmon feed will be a very dynamic area of research and development in the future. With feed requirements of salmon growing in extreme environmental conditions, such as low temperature, are not fully understood. Furthermore, technical solution to minimize movements of fish in sea cage during the coldest periods in winter could improve conditions of fish during the coldest months
  2. Several options already exist for chemically treating salmon lice in sea cages. However, there are two main problems associated with treating lice in such a way. Firstly, there are negative environmental impacts and secondly, lice can and have developed resistance to many of the available chemicals currently being used
  3. There has been a growing interest in land-based salmon farming under more controlled environment. Large smolt farming is a land-based farming, with longer growing time ashore and shorter in ONP, reducing risk in farming with higher cost. Reducing lead time in sea also enables producers to reduce the spread in biomass throughout the year. This may be one of the most sustainable ways of maximizing utilization of licenses.

The meeting is open to anybody interested in salmon farming. Included are refreshments at the meeting and reception at Lax-inn in Reykjavík after the meeting. The cost is ISK 3,000.

The meeting will be in English.

The board

  • Gunnar Thordarson, Matís, Isafjordur, Iceland
  • Björgolfur Hávardsson, NCE Seafood Innovation Cluster AS Norway
  • Gunnvør á Norði and Jóhanna Lava Kötlum, Fiskaaling, Faroe Islands
  • Kurt Buchmann, Department of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Frederiksberg, Denmark
  • Niels Henrik Henriksen, The Danish Aquaculture Organization, Aarhus, Denmark
  • Marko Koivuneva, Finnish Fish Farmers' Association, Helsinki, Finland.

Instituions participating

  • Matís ohf. - Gunnar Thordarson (Iceland)
  • Björgolfur Hávardsson, NCE Seafood Innovation Cluster AS Norway
  • Fiskaaling - Gunnvør á Norði and Jóhanna Lava Kötlum - (Faroe Islands)
  • University of Copenhagen, Department of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Frederiksberg - Kurt Buchmann (Denmark)
  • The Danish Aquaculture Organization, Aarhus - Henrik Henriksen (Denmark)
  • Finnish Fish Farmers' Association, Helsinki - Marko Koivuneva (Finland
  • Ölfus Cluster - Páll Marvin Jónsson

Reports

Seaweed supplementation to mitigate methane (CH4) emissions by cattle

Published:

27/09/2021

Authors:

Dr. Ásta H. Pétursdóttir (Matís), Dr. Helga Gunnlaugsdóttir (Matís), Natasa Desnica (Matís), Aðalheiður Ólafsdóttir (Matís), Susanne Kuenzel (University of Hohenheim), Dr. Markus Rodehutscord (University of Hohenheim), Dr. Chris Reynolds (University of Reading), Dr. David Humphries (University of Reading), James Draper (ABP).

Supported by:

EIT Food

contact

Ásta Heiðrún E. Pétursdóttir

Head of Public Health and Food Safety

asta.h.petursdottir@matis.is

SeaCH4NGE results include a detailed analysis of the chemical composition of seaweed, including heavy metals and nutritional composition. Iodine concentration proved to be the main limiting factor regarding seaweed as a feed supplement. The decrease in methane observed in laboratory methane production experiments (in vitro) is likely due to compounds called fluorotannin rather than bromoform, a known substance that can reduce methane production in ruminants. In vitro screening of the seaweed showed a moderate decrease in methane, but lower methane production was dependent on seaweed species. The reduction was dose-dependent, ie by using more algae, a greater methane reduction could be seen in vitro. The same two types of seaweed were used in the Rusitec experiment (in vitro), which is a very comprehensive analysis that provides further information. An in-vivo study in cows showed that feeding cattle with a mixture of brown algae has a relatively small effect on methane emissions. However, fluorotannins are known to have other beneficial effects when consumed by ruminants. The report also includes a survey of British cow farmers' attitudes towards algae feeding and climate change.

Skýrslan er lokuð / This report is closed

View report

Reports

Seaweed supplementation to mitigate methane (CH4) emissions by cattle (SeaCH4NGE-PLUS)

Published:

17/09/2021

Authors:

Matís: Ásta H Pétursdóttir, Brynja Einarsdóttir, Elísabet Eik Guðmundsdóttir, Natasa Desnica, Rebecca Sim. University of Hohenheim: Susanne Kuenzel, Markus Rodehutscord, Natascha Titze, Katharina Wild.

Supported by:

Climate Fund, Rannís

contact

Ásta Heiðrún E. Pétursdóttir

Head of Public Health and Food Safety

asta.h.petursdottir@matis.is

This report contains the main experimental results of the SeaCH4NGE-PLUS project. In short, screening of the chemical content showed approx. 20 algae species collected in Iceland in 2020 and 2021, not bromoform-rich seaweed, but bromoform-rich seaweed can have a methane-reducing effect when given to cattle. Samples of brown algae were often high in phenol content, indicating a high fluorotannin content that has been linked to moderate methane reduction. Studies on Asparagopsis algae. indicated that these samples could have a short shelf life, but the effect was smaller than expected. Fermentation can have a small positive effect on methane production (ie slightly reduce production), but the extraction of the florotannin did not have a decisive effect on methane production. This report is closed until 31.12.2023.

View report

Reports

Seaweed that improves feed for dairy cows

Published:

22/09/2021

Authors:

Ásta Heiðrún Pétursdóttir, Corentin Beaumal, Gunnar Ríkharðsson, Helga Gunnlaugsdóttir

Supported by:

Agricultural Productivity Fund, Student Innovation Fund

contact

Ásta Heiðrún E. Pétursdóttir

Head of Public Health and Food Safety

asta.h.petursdottir@matis.is

The aim was to investigate whether it would be possible to increase the usefulness of dairy cows by seaweed feeding and to examine the chemical content and quality of the milk. Also whether it would be possible to use seaweed as a mineral source, for example for organic feed that could lead to a new product such as high-fat milk and therefore encourage innovation in
cattle breeding. The results showed that seaweed administration could have a positive effect
on milk production as the groups receiving seaweed showed a slight increase in milk production compared to the control group,
but the change was not significant. The results of the collection samples showed that the trace composition changed. Seaweed supplementation could be, for example
an interesting option for farmers who are interested in or already engaged
organic production but interest in organic farming is increasing among cattle breeders.

View report

Reports

New Wave of Flavors - On new ways of developments and processing seaweed flavors

Published:

16/07/2021

Authors:

Rósa Jónsdóttir, Sophie Jensen, Brynja Einarsdóttir, Aðalheiður Ólafsdóttir, Eva Margrét Jónudóttir, Lilja B. Jónsdóttir

Supported by:

AVS Fisheries Research Fund

contact

Rósa Jónsdóttir

Group Leader

rosa.jonsdottir@matis.is

Health authorities around the world recommend reducing the use of salt in processed foods to reduce the risk of high blood pressure. As salt has a significant effect on taste, there is a risk that less salt consumption will reduce taste and that processing properties may change. Large algae are rich in metals such as sodium, potassium and magnesium which give a salty taste. In addition, they contain a lot of flavor enhancers that can change the taste properties of food. Some species have these properties, while others need to be processed to release potential flavors such as proteins, amino acids and reducing sugars. The aim of this project was to develop valuable healthy flavors from large algae, produced using innovative biotechnological methods, among other things to reduce the use of salt in food processing. The project focused on processing flavorings from seaweed (Ascophyllum nodosum) and gillnets (Saccharina latissima) but these species grow in large numbers near Iceland. Biotechnological methods were used to process flavors, including the use of enzymes developed at Matís. The flavors were tested with e-tongue, e-nose and taste buds from the tongue, as well as sensory evaluation and chemical measurements. Selected flavors were used to test in saltier and tastier foods. The results of the project are promising, but further testing and adaptation of processing processes are needed, including an upscaling of the enzyme's production. 

View report

Reports

Þróun á nýju bleikjufóðri // Novel enhancement of soy meal for Arctic charr diets

Published:

01/08/2020

Authors:

Alexandra Leeper, Clara Sauphar, Margareth Øverland, Wolfgang Koppe, Jón Árnason, Gunnar Örn Kristjánsson, Stephen Knobloch, Sigurlaug Skírnisdottir, David Benhaïm

Supported by:

AVS funding

Fiskeldi er í hröðum vexti um allan heim og gegnir sífellt mikilvægara hlutverki í að tryggja fæðuöryggi. Ísland er stærsti framleiðandi á bleikju í heiminum, en bleikja hefur mikla próteinþörf sem hefur að mestu verið mætt með fóðri sem er ríkt af fiskimjöli. Fiskimjöl er hins vegar dýr próteingjafi og því er fóðurkostnaður í bleikjueldi um 50% af framleiðslukostaði, auk þess sem fiskimjöl er takmörkuð auðlind. Það er því mikilvægt að leita nýrra próteingjafa fyrir bleikju-framleiðiendur. Einn slíkur kostur er að nota soyamjöl, sem hefur verið notað með góðum árangri í laxeldi. Það er hins vegar rannsóknir sem benda til að soyamjöl geti haft neikvæð áhrif á vöxt, þarmaflóru og almenna velferð laxfiska.

This report discusses the main results of the AVS project "Development of new charr feed", the aim of which was to reduce feed costs and increase sustainability in charr farming by replacing fishmeal with soybean meal in feed. The project also sought to gain an understanding of the effects of different "treatment" soybean meal on the growth, intestinal flora and welfare of char.

Fjórar mismunandi tegundir fóðurs voru rannsakaðar þ.e. hefðbundið fóður með fiskimjöli (FM), með ómeðhöndluðu soyamjöli (US), með Ensím-meðhöndluðu soyamjöli (ES), og með ómeðhöndluðu soyamjöli með viðbættu góðgerlum (USP). Lifun, vöxtur, atferli og þarmaflóra bleikju sem fóðruð var í 10 vikur á áðurnefndum fjórum fóðurtegundum var síðan borin saman. Bleikjan sem gerð var tilraun á var smáfiskur á því stigi þar sem vöxtur er mikill og þarmaflóran er í mótun; og því eru áhrif fóðursins sérlega mikilvæg.

Helstu niðurstöður verkefnisins voru að fóður sem innihélt Hypro soyamjöl með viðbættum FOS góðgerlum dró verulega úr vexti, í samanburði við hinar fóðurtegundirnar. Ensím-meðhöndlaða soyamjölið, sem innihélt niðurbrotið NSPs sem virka sem góðgerlar, sem og ómeðhöndlaða soyamjölið með viðbættum góðgerlum stuðlaði að fjölbreyttari þarmaflóru og jók magn mjólkursýru baktería (LABs) sem tengt hefur verið við ónæmi gagnvart sjúkdómum og sýkingum, sem og bættri upptöku og vexti. Niðurstöður sýndu einnig að atferli fiskanna gagnvart ómeðhöndlaða soyamjölinu var umtalsvert öðruvísi en gagnvart hinum fóðurtegundunum, á þann hátt að þeir sýndu því fóðri minni áhuga.

Niðurstöðurnar benda til að viðætur á góðgerlum á þessu vaxtarstigi stuðli að jákvæðum breytingum á þarmaflóru, og geti því leitt til aukins þols við stressi og sjúkdómum síðar meir á lífsferlinum. En Þetta virðist hins vegar koma niður á vexti fiskanna. Þörf er því á frekari rannsóknum til að skera úr um hvort vöxturinn muni skila sér á seinni vaxtarstigum bleikjunnar og þá hvort lifun og aðrir jákvæðir eiginleikar aukist. Vera má að FOS góðgerlar séu ekki hentugir fyrir fiska svo snemma í þroskastigi, en svo virðist sem FOS hafi áhrif á efnaskipti og örfi þarma og ónæmiskerfið. En frekari rannsókna er þörf til að draga frekari ályktanir þar um. Ensím-meðhöndlaða soyamjölið hafði ekki sömu neikvæðu áhrif á vöxt, en breytileiki var meiri var hins vegar meiri. LABs í þarmaflóru bendir til þess að meðhöndlunin stuðli að hættri heilsu og þoli gagnvart sýkingum, án þess að það komi niður á vexti. Niðurstöðurnar benda því til þess að ensím-meðhöndlun á soyamjöli í fóður stuðli að bættri heilsu og lifun bleikju. Mikilvægt er að framtíðar rannsóknir skoði niðurstöður þessa verkefnis og beri saman við ástand þarmavefja. Einnig er mikilvægt að rannsaka frekar hvernig efnaskipti, atferli og þarmaflóra verka saman við mismunandi fóðrun á fyrri lífskeiðum, sem og hver áhrifin eru á langtíma vöxt og velferð.

Skýrslan er lokuð / This report is closed


Aquaculture is globally growing in importance as part of the solution for future food security. In Iceland one of the most important farmed species is the salmonid, Arctic Charr, and Iceland is the world´s leading producers of this cold-water, carnivorous species. Arctic Charr has a high dietary protein requirement which is traditionally provided by diets high in fish meal protein. This drives feed costs that are 50% of the total production costs and puts pressure on wild capture fisheries from which fish meal species are sourced. To facilitate the further expansion of Arctic charr aquaculture it is necessary to find less expensive and more environmentally sustainable feed ingredients. One potential alternative that is widely used in Atlantic Salmon aquaculture is soybean meal, however increasing evidence suggests that for some salmonids, untreated soybean meal can have negative consequences for the growth, gut health and welfare.

The overall aim of this study was to decrease Arctic Charr feed costs and improve the long-term sustainability of salmonid aquaculture in Iceland by replacing fish meal with untreated and treated soybean meal. This study also aimed to understand the wider consequences of untreated and treated soybean meal on the growth, gut health and welfare of Arctic Charr.

Four different diets were assessed, a fish meal control (FM), an untreated soybean meal (US), an enzyme pre-treated soybean meal (ES) and an untreated soybean meal with an added prebiotic (USP). The survival, growth performance, gut microbiome assemblage, and behaviour were of juvenile Arctic Charr fed each of these diets during a 10-week feeding trial were compared. The juvenile life stage was selected since it is a period of crucial developmental, when growth rates a very rapid, and the gut microbiome is colonising, so impact of differing diets can be obtained quickly.

The key findings of this report were that the addition of FOS prebiotic to untreated Hypro soybean meal feed treatment significantly reduced growth compared to the fish meal control when all other feed treatments including the enzyme treated soybean meal performed significantly the same as the fish meal control. The enzyme treatment of soybean meal which aimed to have a secondary benefit of the broken down NSPs acting as prebiotics, as well as the untreated soybean meal with prebiotic had higher gut microbiome diversity as well as a greater presence of Lactic Acid Bacteria (LABs) which are both associated with positive benefits such as more immune robustness and resilience to disease and infection as well as benefits for nutritional uptake and growth. There was also a notable different in behaviour where the fish fed the untreated soybean meal with added prebiotic were both shyer and less active than the fish fed any other feed treatment, indicating that they were more reactive individuals.

When the results of these different tests are viewed together this suggests that the addition of pure prebiotics at such an early developmental stage does promote beneficial changes to the gut microbiome which suggest that the fish will be more resilient to stress and disease later in life and may receive other benefits of prebiotic addition too, however at this early stage the combination with low growth performance suggests that the immune system and gut development may be stimulated but at the cost of energy being drawn away from growth. Salmonids given FOS should be followed from early development through to harvest to see if growth can be compensated and if survival or performance is in fact improved. Otherwise these results may indicate that FOS may not be suitable to apply to diets during such early stages of development, when growth curves are steep naturally. The observation that these fish were also had more reactive coping strategies suggests that the prebiotic application may also effect metabolic rate which could be linked to the stimulation of the gut and immune system, but further experimentation will be need to elucidate this and also to investigate the consequence of this altered behaviour, which could potential reduce the welfare of a intensively farmed fish. On the other hand, the enzymatic treatment of soybean meal did not show the same negative impact to early growth performance but did influence a higher diversity and LABs presence in the gut microbiome suggesting this method of threating soybean meal may bring benefits to health and resilience without as much trade-off. These enzyme-soy treated fish groups were also slightly more reactive than the control treatments, but the impact was not as pre-announced as for the prebiotic added treatment. Overall the results suggest that the best potential benefit to long term health and survival of charr when soybean meal is pre-treated with enzymes when used in the diet.

It will be extremely important in the future to combine these results with gut histology data to clarify the impact of differing treatments to internal gut morphology and health. It will also be important to further study how metabolism, behaviour and the gut microbiome interact with dietary treatments at this early development stage and what the long-term consequences for production and welfare will be.

Peer-reviewed articles

Effect of Dietary Seaweed Supplementation in Cows on Milk Macrominerals, Trace Elements and Heavy Metal Concentrations

This study investigated the effect of seaweed supplementation in dairy cow diets on milk yield, basic composition, and mineral concentrations. Thirty-seven Icelandic cows were split into three diet treatments: control (CON, no seaweed), low seaweed (LSW, 0.75% concentrate dry matter (DM), 13–40 g / cow / day), and high seaweed (HSW, 1.5% concentrate DM, 26–158 g / cow / day). Cows were fed the same basal diet of grass silage and concentrate for a week, and then were introduced to the assigned experimental diets for 6 weeks. The seaweed mix of 91% Ascophyllum nodosum: 9% Digital Laminaria (DM basis), feed, and milk samples were collected weekly. Data were analyzed using a linear mixed effects model, with diet, week, and their interaction as fixed factors, cow ID as random factor, and the pre-treatment week data as a covariate. When compared with CON milk, LSW and HSW milk had, respectively, less Se (−1.4 and −3.1 μg / kg milk) and more I (+744 and +1649 μg / kg milk), while HSW milk also had less Cu ( −11.6 μg / kg milk) and more As (+0.17 μg / kg milk) than CON milk. The minimal changes or concentrations in milk for Se, Cu, and As can not be associated with any effects on consumer nutrition, but care should be taken when I-rich seaweed is fed to cows to avoid excessive animal I supply and milk I concentrations.

Essays

Utilization, quality and physical characteristics of cod catches

Essays

The effects of cold cathode lights on growth of juvenile Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua L.): use of IGF-I as an indicator of growth