Stijn's story

Is there a sustainable future for fish farming? How do you breed tasty, healthy and sustainable fish? For Stijn, this was the start of a year-long search

It all started with a goldfish

Stijn is six years old when when he gets a goldfish aquarium as a present from his mother. It's the beginning of a lifelong passion for fish.

The devastating impact of overfishing on marine life

As a diver, Stijn discovers the beauty of life under the sea. But he sees with his own eyes the devastating impact of overfishing on fragile ecosystems.

Biologist Stijn asked himself if fish farming might be a solution for overfishing. With this question in mind, he starts working in a sea bass farm in Spain. After that, he works at a gamba farm on the Seychelles.

Might fish farming be a solution?

Stijn learns that these fish farms aren't always all that. The negative impact of fish farming on the environment is too big. Wild fish is caught on a massive scale to feed farmed fish. And that farmed fish is bred in cages in rivers or seas, causing pollution.

Stijn dreams of a solution. Could you breed a vegetarian fish? Could you do so entirely on land? Stijn does scientific research at the university of Leuven.

Stijn Onderwater

How do we breed a vegetarian fish?

His search for an ideal fish brings him to the billabongs of Australia. There he finds tiger perches: robust, sturdy fishes who can live off a plant-based diet.

After years of scientific research, his efforts are rewarded. Together with the university of Leuven, Stijn develops the unique vegetarian feed for the Omegabaars.

Vegetarian fish feed thanks to ground-breaking research

At the pub, Stijn meets a couple of chefs. His new friends convince him of Omegabaars' culinary potential. That's the final push: Stijn makes the leap. He'll become a fish farmer of the future, with one mission: to breed the tastiest, healthiest and most sustainable fish.

The biggest sustainable fish farm in the world

Since then, a lot has happened. The fish farm and the tomato farm are connected in a completely closed circular system. It's the world's biggest fish farm. Tomorrow's fish is the most sustainable fish on earth today.

From a boy with a gold fish to the fish farmer of the future. Together with his children, Stijn can now proudly eat a healthy, tasty and sustainable fish. Mission accomplished. Stijn has come full circle.