Title: Improving the nutritional value of endemic species of fodder legumes, through modern biotechnological processes in the diet of Mediterranean aquaculture species

Funding Source: EP Fisheries

Budget IMBBC: 273,685€

Start / End Date: 2021 - 2023

Web site URL:

Project Progress: 100%

Principal Investigator:

Ioannis Nengas

Project Members:

Research Directions:

Fish nutrition and feeding

Fish health

Fish quality and safety


Ensuring food adequacy globally remains one of the biggest challenges and aquaculture will be contributing to food security. Greece has the ideal environmental for Aquaculture, a production activity that today is an important sector of livestock production. The expansion of aquaculture production requires the growth of aquafeed production. The challenge of the industry is to identify sustainable alternatives to fishmeal on which present aquafeeds are largely based. The utilization of plant feedstuffs is an essential requirement for future development of aquaculture. Promising candidate plant ingredients are the forage legumes. Legume proteins are of high quantity and have a balanced amino acid profile. The use of locally available legumes, could directly contribute to the sustainability of fish farming in Greece. Furthermore, such cultivation could help unexploited areas of Greece to develop through agricultural production. Legumes contain, however, several endogenous antinutritional factors and Biotechnology can play a significant role in improving the nutritional value of legumes by using modern processes. These include fermentation and use of exogenous enzymes to enhance feed utilization. The exploitation of organisms during fermentation processes represents the first pillar of the proposed research and it is an innovative approach towards the improvement of legumes. The second pillar focuses on the exploitation of biotechnological methods, such as the use of exogenous enzymes that will be modified and optimised for the nutritional upgrade of legumes as feed ingredients in European sea bass rations. The overall objective of this work is to exploit, optimize and test modern biotechnological methods to improve the nutritional quality of forage legumes, cultured in Greece, as components in diets for sea bass.