Aquaculture sector in the country has been growing rapidly which consumes 60% of its total operating cost for feed alone. Aqua farmers generally purchase fish feeds from the feed companies without knowing its quality attributes. Confidence in the nutritional information on any feed or feed ingredient provided by suppliers is critical for buyers because it provides a guarantee of fish quality. When an animal eat the diets fortified with some adulterant, it causes health related issues to both cultivable fishes, as well as consumers. Therefore, laboratory services are need of the hour in the country to make sure that feeds prepared for any cultivable fishes contains required amounts of all dietary nutrients as per their nutritional requirements and are not added with contaminants, adulterants, antibiotics or any other prohibited materials.
Considering the inevitabilities stated above, Institute of Fisheries Post Graduate Studies (IFPGS), TNJFU – OMR Campus, Vaniyanchavadi, Chennai – 603 103 functioning under Tamil Nadu Dr. J. Jayalalithaa Fisheries University (TNJFU) have established the “State Referral Laboratory for Fish Feed Testing and Quality Certification” for a total budget of Rs. 250 lakhs under National Agriculture Development Programme (NADP). The facility was inaugurated on 16.08.2019 by Prof. S. Felix, Vice-chancellor of TNJFU. Vice-chancellor emphasised that this lab will serve the need of fish farmers, researchers and feed manufacturers of Tamil Nadu at nominal charge basis.
Along with the instruments for proximate analysis, sophisticated instruments like Inductively Coupled Plasma - Mass spectrometry (ICP-MS), High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC), and Gas Chromatography (GC) are also available for the quantitative evaluation of minerals, heavy metals, vitamins, amino acids and fatty acids present in the fish feed and fish feed ingredients.