Repashy Superfoods Releases New Line of Fish Food!
By Ted Judy
The aquarium hobby is inundated with so many types of fish food that when something truly unique comes around we should all step up and take notice. The challenge for a commercial food producer is to produce a product that is inexpensive to manufacture, has a reasonably believable level of nutrition, has a method of delivery that is palatable to fish and is not so overburdened with useless fillers and binders that the food becomes inefficient ay doing what food is meant to do… provide nutrients and energy to fish.
All of the fish foods that we are familiar with have their strengths and weaknesses. Heat-processed food like flakes and pellets lose a lot of their nutrient value when being manufactured, and lose even more as soon as they soak up water (which dissolves vitamins away as fast as the fish can eat). Dry foods also contain a high percentage of binding agents that are indigestible and make the food bulky, which means that the fish need to eat more of it to get the level of nutrients they need. Frozen foods are mostly water, and along with freeze dried foods are very one-dimensional in nutrients.
Many decades ago hobbyists started playing with home-made formulas that used gelatin or agar agar as a binding agent for ‘gel’ food recipes. Some of these are successful, others not so much, but very few hobbyists stick with the process because of the hassle and mess with producing them. Plus, the gelling agents were not easy to work with, are not very palatable to fish, have no nutritional value.
Conceptually, a gel-based food should be the perfect delivery system for nutrients, because is the right recipe can be found the process of making it should produce a food with no nutrient loss, no vitamin loss in water, and endless array of nutrient combinations and all packaged in a way that is palatable to fish… IF IF IF a gelling agent can be found that is less bulky than gelatin or agar.
Allen Repashy, creator of the Repashy Superfoods that have been well known to reptile hobbyists for a decade, has released a new line of gel foods for fish that promise to be the solution. I have been involved with the testing of these foods, and I am completely sold. I love the stuff. Here is the official press release for the new line, which does a great job of describing the strengths of the product.
Repashy Superfoods - Press Release
Repashy would like to announce the introduction of a completely new type of fish food for the Hobbyist and Breeder market. This new line is the culmination of several years of research and development that started life as an amphibian diet, and evolved into a fish food line during the course of testing and development.
Repashy has adopted its proprietary gel technology from its Reptile line, and used it as the backbone to develop this new line of gel diet premixes. These products are sold as powders that are quickly and easily made into firm gels. The gels agents are plant based and there is no need for refrigeration to solidify the gel after heating.
Repashy Gels do a better job of locking in nutrients than any flake, pellet, or powdered diet. Water soluble vitamins and other nutrients remained locked into the gel matrix and remain stable until broken down.
Repashy uses only the highest quality available ingredients. It uses only whole animal ingredients, no “fish meal” or other ingredients that are only industry rejected byproducts. We use whole fish, whole squid, and whole krill as the backbone of our fish lines. (excluding our vegan formulas).
Repashy Gels use no fillers, starches, or binders such as Wheat, Wheat Middlings, Wheat Gluten, Wheat Flour, Rice Flour, Rice Gluten, Corn Meal, Corn Starch, Cereal Starch. All Repashy formulas are Gluten Free.
Repashy’s proprietary gel technology uses soluble algae and plant fibers in a combination that optimizes the gel firmness, elasticity, and durability while only using inclusion levels of 5% on average. Typical Flake and Pellet formulas use up to 20% binders in their products, meaning our formulas allow inclusion of up to 15% more high quality ingredients.
Repashy Gels contain no gelatin, which requires refrigeration to set, and is made of the poorly digestible protein collagen. Gelatin inclusion levels in gel feeds can reach 20% of total formula. This protein will be included in a nutritional analysis, and misrepresent the amount of high quality, bio available protein available in the product. Gluten, which is the most used binder in Flake and Pellet feeds, is also a poorly digestible protein that similarly misrepresents the bio available protein levels in a feed analysis. These poorly digestible proteins, as well as starch binders, can also contribute to water fouling, increase potential gastro intentional blockage, bind the absorption of other nutrients, and promote issues such as bloat.
Repashy Gels also contain no Soy products. Soy contains high levels of Tripsin inhibitors, (a compound necessary to absorb protein) and contains Haemagglutinin growth inhibitors, which are estrogen like compounds.
Repashy Gels all contain a combination of more than six high carotenoid ingredients, (in the form of our famous “SuperPig” premix) providing a full spectrum of carotenoids. Levels in gels range from 250ppm to over 500ppm total carotenoids and are the highest in the industry.
Repashy Gels will remain stable for 24-48 hours in water, which promotes a natural grazing type feeding compared to the “binge and purge” environment provided by once or twice a day feeding. Slow constant feeding, insures a naturally slow digestion process which is not possible when intermittently feeding large amounts and allowing the stomach to empty between feedings.
Repashy Gels use no artificial food colorings or flavors.
Repashy Gels utilizes low temperature gelling agents and does not require a full boil for long periods of time like gelatin or Agar does. It requires around 85c for only a few minutes to induce gel formation. This insures minimal nutrient degradation, especially compared to the high heat process of pellet extrusion or hot drum rolling (making flakes), which produce the very high heat/steam required to activate starch and gluten based binders.
Repashy Gels are thermo-reversible, meaning if you don’t get a good firm gel due to insufficient temperature, you can just reheat and set it again.
Repashy Gels are a very effective way to orally medicate fish. The gel can be heated to required temperature, and the medication can be mixed in as the gel cools, but before it becomes firm. This insures minimal temperature effect on medications. The medication will remain locked into the gel as long as the gel remains solid. This insures direct intestinal delivery which is vastly superior to absorption through medicating the water.
Repashy is launching this new line with the first four of a dozen products. Many of the formulas will work equally well for fresh AND salt water fish. We truly believe that this line will change the way that people look and think about fish feeding. We welcome your feedback and are continually working to improve our products.
Cheers, Allen Repashy
Repashy Superfoods are available through specialty retailers, and the first shipments out to those retailers are just arriving the week of Jan. 23, 2012. For more information and to order Repashy Superfoods, you can visit my website: http://tedsfishroom.com/category/repashy-superfoods/ There are some videos of the food in action, as well as lists of ingredients (on the product pages for each formula).
There are currently four formulas available, and once the whole line is released over the next few months there will be 12 new foods in all. Please check it out! Do not hesitate to contact me through my website if you have any questions.