Review: Aquatic Nutrition XS pellet foods from Vitalis
Nathan Hill takes a look at this new range of fish foods from the brand that used be known as New Era.
If you’ve just woken up from a coma, you should know that the really good New Era food you used to buy has now gone, except it hasn’t really gone. It has just changed name and is now marketed as Vitalis.
New Era had a rep for being the best food out there, and without endorsing it in any way that someone might try to sue me for, I can say that for me personally, it really was the best food out there.
Anyway, forget the old name, it’s not coming back. Instead, focus on Vitalis foods, because they are the new amazing. I went to the factory once, and they showed me the ingredients. They were better than the foods I keep in my own fridge.
The XS part of the name (itself a small icon on the packaging) refers to the granule size. They are very small, too, very much like the 'hundreds and thousands' toppings we used to get on iced cakes. Only a lot fishier.
What I really love about Vitalis pellets is the texture. They’re not quite dry, but not quite wet. Think of them as a squishy soft food. If you like, you can roll them together to make a larger lump. I like to ball them up and push them on to something like a rock, so the fish can slowly graze away. The manufacturers describe the food as a 'soft crumb' of 1mm size. That sums it up pretty well.
The Vitalis XS range includes Tropical, Catfish, Cichlid, Shrimp, Goldfish, Algae, Marine and Platinum marine pellets. I’m not 100% sure what the difference between Marine and Platinum marine is, except that standard Marine has a higher protein content and contains astaxanthin (a beneficial carotenoid for colour and immunity boosting). Aside that, the ingredients look pretty much identical.
I invite you to open a tub of any and have a sniff, and immediately you can smell the quality of manufacture. You can pick out undertones of fish, shrimp and chlorophyll easily, to the point where you’ll wonder why you’re salivating.
Pricing is competitive, ingredients sustainably sourced, and even a peaceful Otocinclus will try to tear your face off to get to it. Fish love this stuff, which is probably why so many public aquaria rely on it as a staple food.
There’s only so many ways I can say 'best food ever' so I’ll stop trying. Go buy some, you’ll love it.
Ease of use:
Value for money:
TBC (around £5.69 for 60g).
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