- Last Updated: 03 May 2012
Competences: SPAROS is a recently created spin-off company of the Centre of Marine Sciences of Algarve (CCMAR/University of Algarve), targeting the development of novel products and processes for fish feeding and nutrition. It offers the alliance of a strong scientific background in fish nutrition and aquaculture, with a flexible pilot-scale feed technology platform. SPAROS has two major business divisions: a) Aquafeed Technology for the development and production of new feeds for fish larvae and ornamental fish and b) Contract-Research activities which plays a pivotal role in fostering the implementation of new knowledge/processes to feed mills and producers of feed ingredients and additives. The scientific team masters the key concepts, techniques and methodologies of fish nutrition and feeding, larval rearing, fish feed technology, and digestive physiology. From their previous experience in renowned European research Institutes, and at CCMAR, the scientific staff has been involved in several national and international research projects over the last ten years. Some current activities include the use phytase supplements as an emerging strategy to reduce phosphorus losses in aquafeeds and petfood; the development of vegetable protein concentrates by air-classification technologies; and the development of microparticulate feeds for fish larvae. CCMAR does not hold any shares in SPAROS capital.
Material resources: The feed technology plant is equipped with a pilot-scale twin-screw extruder with conditioner, a vacuum coater for post-extrusion applications of fats and additives, a multiprocessor fluid bed dryer for the manufacture of spheronised diets for fish larvae and fry, and a spray-dryer for microencapsulation of bioactive compounds additives and production of larval weaning feeds. SPAROS has all the auxiliary equipments necessary to process batch-size feeds (micro-pulverizer for fine grinding, variable size mixers, automatic particle sieving and dryer).
Role: SPAROS will assume a leading role on activities related to the modelling of nutrition changes on fish performance (WP3) and waste production (WP5). SPAROS will be responsible for activities associated to pellet quality testing and production of some experimental feeds for WP5. SPAROS will be involved on developing novel approaches (microencapsulation, enteric coatings) to enhance the delivery efficacy of nutrients and bioactive additives in fish (WP2). SPAROS will participate to training activities of WP7 by hosting a training course on Fish Feed Manufacturing.
Staff members’ profile:
- Dr. Jorge Dias, Head of the Feed Technology Platform. Expertise in fish nutritional requirements; feed formulation and feeding practices; fish feed technology; nutritional modulation of fish quality. Vast experience in R&D projects from previous positions both at academic (INRA, CCMAR) and industry level (Roche/DSM Nutritional Products, France).
- Dr. Luis Conceição, Head of Projects and Contract Research. Expertise in nutrition physiology, in particular in feeding and nutrition of fish larvae and juvenile fish, with emphasis on amino acid and protein metabolism, and integrative modeling of nutrient fluxes. Vast experience in R&D projects at both the national and international level (FP5, FP6, Interreg) as researcher at CCMAR.