Portugal’s first nationally-produced hydrolyzed protein facility emerges in Coruche
GROUNDBREAKING €15.4 MILLION INVESTMENT SPURS INNOVATION IN SUSTAINABLE AQUACULTURE
Sebol, a subsidiary of the ETSA Group, unveils plans for a cutting-edge industrial unit in Coruche, Portugal, marking a significant leap in sustainability and innovation within the aquaculture sector. Fueled by the Recovery and Resilience Plan (PRR) and aligned with the Blue Bioeconomy Pact, the facility is a key component of the Pep4Fish project, focusing on large-scale production of revolutionary protein hydrolysates designed for fish feed.
The construction of Sebol’s new industrial facility, a venture by the ETSA Group – Animal By-Products Transformation Company, is well underway in Coruche, heralding a crucial advancement in sustainability and innovation for aquaculture. Driven by the national Recovery and Resilience Plan (PRR) and integrated into the Blue Bioeconomy Pact, this project is an integral part of the Pep4Fish initiative, with a primary focus on the large-scale production of innovative products – protein hydrolysates specifically tailored for fish feed.
André Almeida, Head of the Research Department at the ETSA Group, expresses optimism about the value generated by this new production unit, stating, ‘Sebol is very optimistic about the significance of this new production unit, representing the first nationally-produced hydrolyzed protein with a focus on fish feed at an industrial level. This marks a significant step that will contribute to efficient and sustainable fish production.’
In simple terms, protein hydrolysates are superfoods developed from animal by-products, optimizing nutrient absorption for fish. Aligned with circular economy principles, this process involves utilizing by-products from fish, poultry, swine, and even insects, guided by the various phases of the Pep4Fish project’s research. Ultimately, these high-value-added hydrolysates will be incorporated into feeds for sea bass and gilt-head bream, bolstering fish health, contributing to human nutrition, reducing food waste, and promoting sustainability in aquaculture.
The new industrial unit, spanning approximately 9,000 square meters with a €15.4 million investment, of which about €4.6 million is funded by the Blue Bioeconomy Pact, is slated for completion in the second half of 2024. It is expected to create 15 new jobs, serving as a catalyst for sustainability and innovation, significantly contributing to the agri-food sector in Portugal, according to André Almeida.
Led by the ETSA Group, the Pep4Fish project includes the collaboration of nine partners, encompassing research centers and companies: AgroGrIN Tech, B2E – Blue Bioeconomy CoLAB (B2E CoLAB), CIIMAR – Interdisciplinary Centre of Marine and Environmental Research, ITS – Industry of Transformation of By-Products (ETSA), Seaculture (Jerónimo Martins), Savinor and Sorgal (Soja Portugal), Sebol (ETSA), and the Portuguese Catholic University.