17 Dec 2018

Removing the barriers to sustainably fed and affordable food by 2030

The Project X ‘FEED-X’ project

Blonk Consultants is currently involved in the FEED-X project. FEED-X is one of the pilot projects of Project X, a WWF-founded corporate systems accelerator that helps organisations make difficult shifts in their sustainability agenda. FEED-X aims to remove the barriers to sustainably fed and affordable food by 2030.

Urgent need for sustainable innovations

Recent research by WWF and SARF has clearly shown that our present food production system is so reliant on terrestrial crops for livestock and fish feed that there are not enough land and freshwater resources to provide sufficient food to feed nearly 10 billion people in 2050. If no change occurs, greenhouse gas emissions will also increase dramatically between now and 2050. The projected increase in aquaculture production means there will be an additional need for raw materials, which is why the aquaculture industry is also looking for ways to overcome the risk of a raw materials gap. As the aquaculture industry has major impacts on climate change and biodiversity, it makes an excellent test case for the FEED-X pilot project. Moreover, the aquaculture industry has the flexibility needed to incorporate changes, making it an ideal candidate for the adoption of sustainable innovations. Salmon and shrimp have been chosen as the demonstration cases for the FEED-X pilot. These two animals have both high food consumption rates, but are fed very differently.

Alternative fish feed ingredients

Conventional materials used in aquaculture feed are fish meal, oil, agricultural crops and protein and fat products. Potential novel feed ingredients (unconventional feedstuffs of plant or animal origin) that could change the feed industry are already available, but not yet at commercially viable volumes or prices. FEED-X therefore focuses on sourcing, testing and financing to scale up production of alternative feed ingredients for use in the global feed industry. The lead corporate partner in this project is Skretting (a subsidiary of Nutreco) and the technical partner is WWF. Blonk Consultants is one of the delivery partners along with 3 Keel, PwC, the University of Cambridge, Wageningen Livestock Research (WLR), Utrecht University, Edinburgh Centre for Carbon Innovations, FAI Farms, Brand Legacy and Harvard Consulting on Business & Environment.
More about Project X

Project X is a WWF-founded corporate systems accelerator that helps organisations to make difficult shifts in their sustainability agenda. Their focus is to help entire industries step change their sustainability performance. The ambition for Project X in the lead up to 2020 is to deliver two pilot programmes, FEED-X and GAVI-X. Project X’s strategic partners include WWF, the University of Cambridge, Climate KIC, Thompson Reuters, UN One Planet Network and Business for Social Responsibility.

Read more about Project X

Our involvement in FEED-X

The goal of the first phase of the FEED-X pilot project is a de-risking assessment to evaluate the sustainability and viability of alternative feed ingredients to be integrated into the shrimp and salmon feed system. These alternatives are looked at through different ‘lenses’: environment, nutrition, legislation, society, economy, ethics and profitability. Blonk Consultants is carrying out the environmental assessment of the selected feed ingredients.

Target and expected impact

The target of the project is for 10% of the global feed industry to adopt alternative feed ingredients into their value chains. The expected impact of the project is to significantly reduce environmental impacts (of aquacultured seafood) related to feed ingredient production, specifically for ingredients that contribute to deforestation, exhaust global carbon emission budgets or are sourced from non-responsible fishing practices.

Current status

In 2018 a value chain and value chain adaptability assessment was carried out for the fish feed industry, followed by a market readiness report. This work was the starting point of the current de-risking assessment phase, which will be finalised in the first quarter of 2019.

Next steps: The FEED-X Challenge

The FEED-X Challenge will be formally launched in early 2019. It will call for innovators to come forward with solutions that can transform the sustainability performance in the aquafeed value chain. The nine most promising innovators will be selected and provided with access to opportunities to scale their operations, including in-depth testing to streamline integration into Skretting’s procurement and ultimately accelerate adoption across the entire industry.

More information

If you have any questions about FEED-X,
please contact Elena Koukouna or call +31 (0)182 579970.