Over the years, countries outside of Asia and Africa have opened up to stranger delicacies. A pub in Brussels is serving crickets in a variety of flavors. Jumping on the insect bandwagon is Entocycle, a startup attempting to turn fly larvae into a source of protein.
Not only can the larvae of black soldier flies be made into animal feed, but they also gobble down food waste during their short lives, doubling the environmental benefits of Entocycle’s automated system.
Okay, so we’re not going to be feasting on worm burgers anytime soon, but we can remain optimistic about our livestock and aquaculture. The larvae are also easy to raise.
The larvae of black soldier flies… will feast on organic waste from [a] large range of sources, including breweries and commercial kitchens. Because they are not picky [about] what they eat, black soldier flies are well-suited to being raised in an automated system.
Female black soldier flies can lay up to 1,000 eggs at a time. Harvesters use 5% of eggs to repopulate new cycles. They hatch the other 95% and turn them into feed as quickly as within a week.
The process is simple and affordable, which makes it no surprise that Entocycle has raised $1 million in grant money. Insect protein may not yet be the norm, but holds promise for the near future.