How much Omega-3 does farmed salmon contain?

Although farmed salmon contains less omega-3 than before, it is still an important source of fatty acids in the Norwegian diet.

Salmon is a good source of the long, poly-unsaturated fatty acids EPA and DHA. Intake of EPA and DHA is more effective as part of your diet than as a dietary additive. Photo: Norwegian Seafood Council

The omega-3 fatty acids DHA and EPA are essential for a healthy and balanced diet. The fatty acids have been shown to have a positive effect on blood count levels, infant development, cognitive health and the immune system. The main source of omega-3 fatty acids in the Norwegian diet is fish and seafood.

 

Why does salmon contain less omega-3?

Fishmeal and fish oil, the sources of omega-3 in salmon, are made from wild fish. In order to increase the production of salmon at times when there is a limited supply of fishmeal and fish oil, some of the marine ingredients are replaced with vegetable products. If the salmon feed contains a lot of vegetable ingredients, it will have less marine omega-3. However farmed salmon is still a good source of omega-3. It is enough to have salmon for dinner once a week to meet the body's need for omega-3. 150 grams of salmon contains 3.2 grams of omega-3 (1.9 grams EPA and DHA and 1.3 grams ALA).

 Read more about why there is less fishmeal and fish oil in feed.

 

Salmon produce omega-3 themselves

Salmon have a unique biology and produce their own omega-3. Thus, there is more omega-3 in salmon meat than in the feed they eat. As long as the feed has been blended correctly, the salmon are able to convert plant omega-3 to marine omega-3, according to NIFES.

Salmon and health

 

Useful links

Still a good source of marine omega-3 fatty acids (NIFES)

Article about essential fatty acids (in Norwegian only)