Challenge FAQ

What is the third F3 Challenge?

This third F3 challenge consists of 3 separate Award Categories:  Shrimp, Salmon and Other Carnivorous species. Each separate Award Category will have its own prize, its own contestants and will have a single winner from each Award Category.  If a lead company (Entrant) wants to enter multiple Award Categories, they can do so. For each Feed submitted, be sure to include the Award Category, the Species or Animal for which the Feed Applies, and the Life Stage.

Who is the organizer?

The F3 Team works together to organize and administer the contest.

Who can be entrants?

The lead entrant must be a company and either the owner or licensee of a distinct formulation of F3 feed (“F3 Feed Type”) for a carnivorous fish in one of three categories: (a) Salmonid, (b) Shrimp, or (c) Other Carnivorous Species. Other Carnivorous Species entrants must have their species approved by the Judges. Qualified submissions are defined in the Challenge Rules

The lead entrant can form partnerships with other companies to create an Entrant Team. For each partnering company, the lead entrant should send the following information to f3fishfreefeed@gmail.com:
(1) the name of company and website
(2) the name, title, address, work phone number, mobile
phone number, and email address of the contact person at the company, and include
(3) a brief description of the partnership, and

If the lead entrant is partnering with other companies for purposes of aggregating total sales of qualifying F3 Feed Types to End Customers, then for each such partner, in addition to (1)-(3) above, please also include:
(4) a description of the partner company’s sales territory.

Partnering companies can be added to Entrant Teams until November 30, 2020.

The lead entrant of the winning team for each category will be awarded the prize (and be responsible for splitting the prize at its discretion among its Entrant Team partners) as described in the Challenge Rules.

Can multiple feed mills & farmers come together with the lead company to form a consortium?

Yes, we encourage consortia.

What are the advantages of joining the Challenge, even if we are not in a position to win?

There are still good reasons to join this Challenge. First of all, due to the technical difficulty of the Challenge, our impression is that even pilot scale efforts may well win. The other benefits of participation include publicity and an invitation to a networking event.

  • Publicity: Exposure of your product in the press may be helpful to book orders prior to a commercial launch or increase orders if your product is already being sold commercially. Our press targets not just English but China and South East Asian markets.
  • Networking event: Contestants who have submitted samples by November 2020 will be invited in February 2021 to a networking event with large feed companies and others interested in innovative ingredients for aquaculture.
What are the requirements of feed to be counted towards an Entrant's sales?

For sales to qualify and count toward an entrants’ progress in this Challenge, the feed sold must:

1. be formulated as aquaculture feed, for either a Salmonid, Shrimp, or Other Carnivorous Species. If a contestant submits feed for “Other Carnivorous Species,” the contestant must get approval from the judges for the species.
2. be free of marine animal ingredients

Does a feed mill have to disclose its recipe & IP?

Entrants must disclose ingredients for each feed, but not the recipe. Usually, ingredients need to be disclosed in most countries on the feed bag, so the contest request is not unusual.

Can you go over the timeline of the contest?

A company must register for the Challenge by April 30, 2020. Then you have until November 30, 2020 to send in a sample of your qualifying product and add any partners to your contestant team. After, sales reporting will begin in January 2021 and include 4 quarterly sales reports, and conclude in September 2021 when winners for each category will be announced.

How do you select winners for each category?

A winner will be selected for each category – salmonid, shrimp, and other carnivorous species – by the 3 judges from sponsoring institutions. The winning teams will have the greatest amount of qualifying F3 Feeds sold in their category at the conclusion of the Challenge sales periods (August 31, 2021).

How do you make sure the contest is fair?

We will use DNA testing and chromatography to ensure that the fish feed is from non-marine animal sources. Then, the judges will verify sales records through on-site visits and other validating techniques.

Is the Challenge open to non-U.S. companies?

Yes, the Challenge is open to companies worldwide. However, English is the official language for submissions and all other communications for the Challenge. International competitors need to translate any communications into English for their submissions to be considered.

Are you against using seafood in aquaculture feeds?

No. In fact, we are considering another prize targeted towards recycling farmed fish waste. However, for this prize we want to increase the options available for alternative feed sources for carnivorous species since the supply of wild caught fish and in particular forage fish, which are the most common source of fishmeal and fish oil used in aquafeeds, is at risk. More innovation is needed to find additional ingredients and cost effective formulations if the industry is to continue to grow.

Why are aquaculture by-products not allowed in the F3 Feed Types?

While we acknowledge that aquaculture by-products are a responsible source of fish meal and fish oils, at this time, testing does not allow differentiation of aquaculture by-products from wild capture fishery products.

What are some of the concerns with using bycatch and seafood processing byproducts for fish meal and fish oils?

There is a lot of good information on fishing bycatch and the processed waste of seafood being used as ingredients back into aquaculture diets, normally for unrelated species. While we agree that these are efficient uses of these resources, there are also many problems. Bycatch and seafood processing byproducts are often and increasingly used for direct human consumption. In addition, removing forage fish and bycatch from the ocean impacts animals higher in the marine food chain, such as seabirds, marine mammals, and larger fish. Many studies have documented the decline in large predatory species. It is also important to point out that processing waste produces low-quality fish meal and fish oil, as high-quality protein and oils have been removed. The high bone and scale content meal that is left is an inferior ingredient, but nevertheless does contribute 10-15% of the global fish meal supply and extends the supply of fish meal as overfishing continues in some parts of the world.

We have an ingredient company with an ingredient that is promising for aquaculture. What do I need to do to determine the market potential, and break into the aquafeed industry?

Aquafeed companies are keenly interested in alternative ingredients to replace fishmeal and fish oil, because of their high cost. But, ingredient replacement is risky. To prove to aquafeed companies that your ingredient has promise, we recommend you follow the recommended Ingredient Evaluation Process outlined here.