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COVER STORY ▶▶▶


The use of insect meal in poultry diets is not yet allowed in the European Union.


separations of risky and non-risky organic residuals, but to make this work on a large scale is easier said than done. This is why Protix is working with local partners that supply insect feed ingredients to us to improve the logistics and quality control of certain streams so that they do meet regu- latory restrictions. This gives us access to more organic waste and we still work according to the rules set for insect production in the EU.” As for the new factory that Protix is building in the Netherlands, this has led to a complete changed of the recipe – to using feeds that are going into the bioreactor. We replaced about 70% of our diet with more sustainable streams.”


Optimising the art of insect production Next to looking at insect feed critically, good engineering practices are key to making insect farming a sustainable prac- tice. To reduce the energy use of insect farming, a range of


28 ▶ ALL ABOUT FEED | Volume 27, No. 3, 2019


things can be done. The use of better equipment and selec- tive insect breeding are some of them. “Next to changing the feed while working on the LCA, we also redesigned many of the systems at Protix to obtain higher energy savings than the 25% given in the research paper. I won’t make any claims about how big the savings are, we are pretty conservative and will do another analysis in a couple of years when we have some more long-term data, but I am optimistic that we will beat the projections in the paper,” Dr Schmitt explains. He adds: “Efficient farming practices and genetics also have an impact but neither are accounted for in our LCA research be- cause it is hard to put a concrete estimate on what their con- tribution to impact reduction will be. Protix does work on Smart Farming software for various applications that will probably reduce impact, and our partnership with Hendrix Genetics to improve the performance of the insects we sell should have that effect too. But again, we need more data


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