An area sorely overlooked in our field is the use of the digestate remaining after BSF are used to recycle organic waste as a fertilizer or plant substrate. The following paper explored this topic.
Setti, L., E. Francia, A. Pulvirenti, S. Gigliano, M. Zaccardelli, C. Pane, F. Caradonia, S. Bortolini, L. Maistrello, and D. Ronga. 2019. Use of black soldier fly (Hermetia illucens (L.), Diptera: Stratiomyidae) larvae processing residue in peat-based growing media. Waste Management 95: 278-288.
In the study, they raised BSF on the standard Gainesville House Fly Diet. So, the residue is a bit "laboratory"; however, I think they selected the appropriate starting point. Based on data generated from this study, future research can explore residues from other organic material digested.
The takeaway- yes, the waste/digestate can be used as a partial commercial peat replacement (20%) to grow baby leaf lettuce, basil, and tomato.
But- we really need to build on these results and explore different residues (i.e., different organic material digested by BSF) as substrates for growing plants.
Insects as Food & Feed in the News!
Robots Producing Insects (USA): Great video on cricket production. Also, nice discussion on the global perspective of insect farming.
Insects to Feed Pets (UK): A discussion on insects as food for pets- with some suggestions of items dogs shouldn't eat.
Cookies & Insects (EU): An overview of insects as food ingredients.
Bugtoberfest (Texas, USA): A great outreach event on entomology in general.
Jeffery K. Tomberlin, PhD, Loves the Bugtoberfest Concept!
Individuals with over 25 years research experience with the black soldier fly. We are passionate about the science behind the black soldier fly and its ability to convert waste to protein.
Get Notified Here
Install an RSS app to get notified from us when a new post is up!