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Why Farmers Are Diversifying Into Insect Farming – The Key To A More Sustainable Food Chain
By: Beta Bugs Ltd
Why Farm Insects Now?
Farmers are seriously considering farming insects as a means of generating revenue, reducing their use of soya in animal feed, and localizing their protein production. There are a range of production options, from small, on-farm units to units that are as large as a farm in its entirety. By producing protein locally using locally derived materials, insect farming provides perfect opportunities for farmers wanting to use insect protein directly in their feed, or to sell it on to feed manufacturers.
The Benefits of This Diversification Opportunity
When it comes to diversification, insect farming equipment providers give existing farmers the means to produce their own protein on-farm using on-farm surplus heat, space, and energy they have available. Insects such as Black Soldier Fly Larvae can be reared at high densities, meaning tonnes of protein can be produced from a relatively small footprint, reducing feed ration costs at small-scale. As a result, the best way for farmers to leverage insect farming is to become an insect farmer themselves. By working with these established technology and egg or baby larvae suppliers, farmers can now produce Black Soldier Fly larvae at a range of scales – be it small-scale systems (12 tonne of live larvae/year)
For those who want to establish large-scale production, the diversification opportunity is similar to setting up large-scale animal production. In this case, farmers target a scale of production in the thousands of tonnes/year, with the resulting insect protein and fat being supplied to feed manufacturers in the livestock, aqua and pet sectors to generate revenue. Alternatively, the protein is used directly within large-scale animal production operations, especially if a feed mill is available on site. If on-farm production is not possible or desired, farmers can still use insects within their feeding regime by working with local suppliers of insect protein.
How Beta Buzz is Nurturing the Insect Farming Industry
Following on from the overwhelming response of the 1st issue, Beta Buzz #2 was created to help bridge the gap between businesses and customers struggling to find the required and most up to date information all in one place.