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 Post subject: Fish Feed in USA
PostPosted: Dec 30th, '10, 19:45 
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I'm getting very close to starting my first system, and I'm trying to find fish food in the South East USA. The two most cost effective feeds I've found so far are:

http://www.aquaticeco.com/subcategories ... /zeigler/0

http://www.harriettahills.com/nesicuptrfe.html

This puts it at about $1.40 per pound. From what I'm reading, it takes about 2lbs of feed for every pound of live fish. Harvesting weight is 1.5 lbs. That would mean the the fish would cost $4.20 in food. The 1.5lb fish would yield about 33% food, or (2) fillets at about 1/4lb costing $2.10 each. That would mean the dressed or selling weight would be $8.40 / pound.

That does not include power, testing supplies, fry costs, or shipping.

The selling price for Fresh Tilapia is about $9-$14/lb fresh or $5-$9/lb Frozen with the better prices being at the local grocery stores.

http://www.amazon.com/Charleston-Seafoo ... B0000SX9QY

http://www.wildedibles.com/store/retail ... ?prodID=68

http://www.giovannisfishmarket.com/fish ... illet.aspx

http://www.foodservicedirect.com/produc ... -Pound.htm

At these costs / prices, it seems like even large scale commercial facilities wouldn't be able to turn a profit. Is there someplace in the South East US where people are getting food cheaper? Is there something I am missing? There's got to be a way to lower these costs some.


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 Post subject: Re: Fish Feed in USA
PostPosted: Dec 30th, '10, 19:58 
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When it comes to feed in AP, cheapest is not always the best. Some cheap feeds can lead to plant deficiencies so then you have buy them and add them to the system. Some feeds just give poor plant growth in general.

The trick is definitely that when you find a feed that gives good plant growth at a reasonable cost, stick to it....

And lastly remember, it's not all about the fish.... Especially in commercial operations. Plant product is where the profits are, the return from fish sales counts for only a VERY small percentage.

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 Post subject: Re: Fish Feed in USA
PostPosted: Dec 30th, '10, 22:26 
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Seriously, this cant be healthy.
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Try going to the Purina Mills web site and then do a zipcode search for feed stores that are purina dealers near you. (but ignore tractor supply as they won't special order as they do central warehousing and you don't want fish feed that has been sitting in a warehouse for who knows how long.) Anyway call up some of the feed stores on the list and you can see if they will get a bag of Aquamax Dense culture 4000 (or whichever variety you choose) put on the next truck and what the price currently is since it does fluctuate. Or of you really are running a commercial facility, you will probably want to contact the manufacturer directly and get a whole pallet full of feed delivered at closer to wholesale prices.

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 Post subject: Re: Fish Feed in USA
PostPosted: Dec 31st, '10, 02:00 
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earthbound wrote:
When it comes to feed in AP, cheapest is not always the best. Some cheap feeds can lead to plant deficiencies so then you have buy them and add them to the system. Some feeds just give poor plant growth in general.


That makes sense that the AP food needs different . more nutrients. It seems, though that the even with cheap feeds, that a purely aquaculture operation would have a hard time breaking even. Do they have just make it up on quantity? Larger orders = smaller costs combined with larger quantity of fish sales adding up?

earthbound wrote:
The trick is definitely that when you find a feed that gives good plant growth at a reasonable cost, stick to it....


That's the thing, what's reasonable cost?

earthbound wrote:
And lastly remember, it's not all about the fish.... Especially in commercial operations. Plant product is where the profits are, the return from fish sales counts for only a VERY small percentage.


Again, makes sense, but again with those number, can any profit even be made on the fish alone at all?


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 Post subject: Re: Fish Feed in USA
PostPosted: Dec 31st, '10, 02:03 
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TCLynx wrote:
Try going to the Purina Mills web site and then do a zipcode search for feed stores that are purina dealers near you. (but ignore tractor supply as they won't special order as they do central warehousing and you don't want fish feed that has been sitting in a warehouse for who knows how long.) Anyway call up some of the feed stores on the list and you can see if they will get a bag of Aquamax Dense culture 4000 (or whichever variety you choose) put on the next truck and what the price currently is since it does fluctuate. Or of you really are running a commercial facility, you will probably want to contact the manufacturer directly and get a whole pallet full of feed delivered at closer to wholesale prices.


Thanks TCL, I'll be looking into that ASAP. I'm not running a commercial operation. At least not yet anyways, I think that's most people's hopes here. Like I said, I'm about to start up my first system, and I thought maybe it would be nice to have the food ready before the fish get here. What are you seeing as a good cost right now?


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 Post subject: Re: Fish Feed in USA
PostPosted: Dec 31st, '10, 02:33 
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Big time commercial operations don't pay that much for feed. Ive heard guys say they pay $0.22/lb for feed but they buy it in gigantic quantities (5 semi's full) and store it in Silos. It's all about quantity. You call somebody up and say you've got 20 grand to spend on feed, the price is gonna drop.

You are very correct though about it being hard to turn a profit on a limited budget. Specifically with Tilapia, it seems to be go big or go home. Ever thought of running a greenwater or biofloc system for Tilapia (greatly reducing feed costs)? Then run your AP setup for profit from the veggies?

Im doing my Tilapia spawning in a greenwater pool this year, then stocking my system from that. Going to be as simple as simple gets.

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 Post subject: Re: Fish Feed in USA
PostPosted: Dec 31st, '10, 03:48 
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Knowing the source (what you actualy eat) makes a big difference on the "price" people are willing to pay for food. Luxury to the western society but still a factor that seems to be missing in a lot of the calculations on differente posts on this an other AP forums, when it comes to the equationes on turnover $-vise, compearing prices bla bla bla.
I live seaside in Norway, fishing is free at sea, so I can go fishing with a net, wich I do as recreation(also with fishing rod) so fish is free unless I put a price on the recration
the houers/fuel/boat/........
I have a garden/fields/forest (aprox 40-50 acres) I grow wegetables and flowers, shoot/hunt small and big game (moose,deer,ducks,pigons,hare..........),
I still shop/buy food, and pay for quality, I can buy "prima" trout/salmon direct 1.hand
(big aquaculture operator) runing on my property(even get it for free).
So why do I wan't to get in to AP?
To me its about sustainabilitiy, etichs?, hobby......bla bla bla "way off living"
I can afford and prefer to use money on what I beeleve is good for me, I might be fooled but I enjoy it, and belive its cool to do.
There is a big marked for AP products in a rich western society like Norway, I love it and pay 3-10 X the "retail price on food" not out of snobbery but because I belive its healthy and offcourse I have the privelige to afford it.
Aprox 70-80% off western Europe's population can afford to pay a lot more for the food and would iff they had inside knoledge on the matter.


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 Post subject: Re: Fish Feed in USA
PostPosted: Dec 31st, '10, 12:23 
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I am blessed in that Zeigler Bros is right down the road, and a 44 lb bag is like $20 picked up at the mill. It sucks that you would have to pay that much for it.

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 Post subject: Re: Fish Feed in USA
PostPosted: Dec 31st, '10, 18:38 
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We're definitely looking to be self sufficient, that's how I found out about aquaponics. Beyond that, though, it's not just about the money, but it's harder to move down that path when costs are that high. We are paying more for produce, etc. than the average person because we do eat as organic as possible and this would reduce costs (I think) in the long run as it is. The natural and organic growing methods is what really drew us into AP.

But, it seems people are paying WAY less for food though. Food seems to be the largest on going cost and reducing those costs will dramatically reduce the payback time in increase the return on investment. I can then compound this be reinvesting that savings back into self sufficiency invests and/or aquaponics. On my initial system on a 100 gallon tank, I'm only looking at about 200 pounds of food or so. Initially, that's not a big deal. When the larger systems go in, then it will begin to be an issue quick.

So what are people using in the USA and what is everyone paying (or is that Taboo to ask?)? What are some more brands? How did everyone find their suppliers?

Obviously:

Purina Mills
Silver Cup
Zeigler Bros.


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 Post subject: Re: Fish Feed in USA
PostPosted: Jan 1st, '11, 00:34 
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I had my tilapia in a 180 gallon tub and only used 1 1/2 bags of food until they were a good big harvestable size. This was about 60 fish.

Note that tilapia feed can be supplemented on-site with black soldier fly larvae, bugs, worms, and duckweed.

For pond culture a lot of times they throw fertilizer into the ponds which cause blooms of algae and micro-animals, so some of it is grown on-site that way too.

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 Post subject: Re: Fish Feed in USA
PostPosted: Jan 1st, '11, 00:48 
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Here are 2 more Tilapia Feed suppliers

Premium Fish Food Company
http://premiumfishfood.com/zen/
this is the feed I've been using lately

AquaFarms Fish Food,
http://aquafarmsfishfood.webs.com/feedingchart.htm
Use's NO terrestrial animals for the ingredients
Quite a bit Pricier than the rest of the feeds, but likely worth it, because of no terrestrial animal protein........ if bought in large builk quantity's, it would be a lot cheaper, but i don't how much compared to the others in the same quantity


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 Post subject: Re: Fish Feed in USA
PostPosted: Jan 3rd, '11, 00:59 
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RS_ wrote:
Quite a bit Pricier than the rest of the feeds, but likely worth it, because of no terrestrial animal protein........ if bought in large builk quantity's, it would be a lot cheaper, but i don't how much compared to the others in the same quantity


Is there an issue with terrestrial animal protein or is just 'not natural'? I've seen several recipes for beef heart (and liver) based food the on here which some people seem to have tried. I haven't yet seen any issues anyone has brought up with it.


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 Post subject: Re: Fish Feed in USA
PostPosted: Jan 4th, '11, 02:22 
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i got my first bag of fish food at the fish farm where i got my fish, usually a good idea to get some of what they were hopefully "trained" on.. then see what's available near you, and gradually mix in the "new" feed with the old

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 Post subject: Re: Fish Feed in USA
PostPosted: Mar 1st, '11, 05:17 
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try this
http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/pdffiles/FA/FA09700.pdf


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 Post subject: Re: Fish Feed in USA
PostPosted: Mar 5th, '11, 02:15 
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You can also try jehmco.com They are a New Jersey based company where I get all my supplies from.They sell pumps,bulk heads,water storage tanks,food,air pumps,pond supplies etc.
I also know kensfish.com has cheap stuff as well but I haven't ordered from them yet.I meant to a few times,put a bunch of stuff in the cart and then at midnight ,or I guess every 24 hrs it empties the cart and you lose all the stuff you wanted and would have to start all over.Kinda a pain to have to start all over again so out of frustration~no order.
I'm new to the board/forum and I do not have any affiliation to either company.I just use Jehmco a lot since they have great prices compared to most places on line and I like saving money :geek:
John


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