Shrimp robustness

Challenges of shrimp farming

Shrimp farming is not easy, since shrimp are constantly exposed to pathogen pressures, environmental fluctuations (e.g. temperature, salinity, dissolved oxygen etc.) and other production stressors (e.g. stocking density, handling etc.).

Nevertheless, arguably the biggest challenge facing producers is disease, where mortality can be anywhere from 30 - 80%. These unpredictable harvests increase the risk of shrimp farming, and there is a considerable financial cost. Although difficult to quantify, high mortality rates cost the shrimp industry billions of US dollars every year. Despite extensive research, no silver bullet has been found to address these complex challenges, and it is an unrealistic objective. Therefore, a multifactorial approach is needed across the value and production chain and through collaboration of different stakeholders.

dsm-firmenich offers specific solutions targeting the host, pathogen and environment for a holistic approach to improving shrimp robustness, increasing productivity and resulting in a predictable and consistent harvest.

dsm-firmenich – THE strategic partner for shrimp robustness

dsm-firmenich has one of the most diverse product portfolios in the industry today and offers a holistic approach to shrimp robustness, to build disease and stress resistance from the hatchery until harvest. Utilizing cutting edge know-how and technology, dsm-firmenich has developed solutions which address key challenges in terms of shrimp robustness, focusing on the host, pathogen and environment. With a strong innovation mindset and a willingness to build partnerships, dsm-firmenich supports the shrimp industry by:

Strong host

Building a strong host is key to robustness, as it allows the animal not only to fight disease and infection, but also to deal with production stressors and environmental fluctuations. Whilst there is not always a disease threat, there is always one, or more production stressors! A prophylactic health management approach is needed for Improved Lifetime Performance and optimal harvests.

dsm-firmenich solutions, such as Rovimax®, Mycofix® and OVN™ contribute to building a robust host by:

  • Improving stress and disease resistance
  • Supporting optimal gut health and barrier function
  • Mitigating mycotoxins which can weaken the host

Pathogen control

Many shrimp pathogens (e.g. Vibrio spp.) are ubiquitous in nature, and their presence in the culture environment is the norm. Unmanaged, their exponential growth can quickly lead to dangerous levels, as well as driving virulence. In addition, certain Vibrio spp. can produce toxins which attack the hepatopancreas causing high mortality. Managing pathogen abundance is not only important for shrimp survivability, but also allows us to Tackle Antimicrobial Resistance in aquaculture, which has important implications for human health.

dsm-firmenich solutions, such as Biotronic® and AquaStar® contribute to pathogen inhibition by:

  • Direct inhibiting pathogen growth
  • Reducing pathogen virulence by quorum quenching mechanisms
  • Degrading toxins (e.g. PirA/ PirB from AHPND positive Vibrio spp.) which attack gut and hepatopancreas tissues

Improved environment

Shrimp share an intimate relationship with their environment. As such, they are continuously exposed to pathogens and toxic substances in the pond water or sediment which can reduce health and performance. For the same reason that clean air is important for human health, good water quality is critical for shrimp. Further, maintaining water quality is also an important environmental consideration to Reduce Emissions from Livestock and Aquaculture.

dsm-firmenich solutions, including AquaStar® and Feed Enzymes contribute to an improved environment by:

  • Improving water quality, through reduction of toxic metabolites
  • Improving sediment conditions, by controlling organic matter levels and shortening pond ‘down-time’
  • Reducing environmental effluents, in particularly Nitrogen and Phosphorous, key drivers of biological change


  • OVN Optimum Vitamin Nutrition®

    OVN Optimum Vitamin Nutrition® is about feeding animals high quality vitamins, produced with the lowest environmental footprint, in the right amounts, appropriate to their life stage and growing conditions, to optimize: • Animal Health and Welfare ▶ good for animals • Animal Performance ▶ good for farmers • Food Quality & Food Waste ▶ good for consumers and the planet

  • AquaStar®

    AquaStar® comprises the most complete range of aquaculture probiotics for hatchery, feed mill and farms to improve growth and enhance pond and water quality.


    Fish need a robust immune system to stay healthy. Rovimax is a high quality feed additive containing nucleotides to booster and strengthen the immune system- for best performance in aqua cultured species and better returns for producers.

  • Biotronic®

    The Biotronic® line of state-of-the-art enhanced acidifiers support modern farm animals against Gram-negative bacteria.

  • Mycofix®

    The Mycofix® portfolio of feed additives represents the most state-of-the-art solution for protecting animal health by deactivating mycotoxins that contaminate farm animal feed. Its safety and efficacy are proven by 7 EU authorizations for substances that deactivate mycotoxins.