So when you review what is known about the black soldier fly today- it is easy to focus on papers that have been published in the past 10 years or so.... as they seem most relevant. But here is a paper that really set the stage (focus of post). Dr. Sheppard, Dr. Larry Newton, and others put together a concept paper explaining what the black soldier fly could mean in terms of waste management. Now, with that said, they were focused on animal waste- the idea of recycling food waste had not truly been discussed at that point. But the concepts bridge well with food waste as well.
What is really cool about this paper though is how far ahead of everyone they were at that time.
If you have a minute- give this paper a read. It is easy to digest (no pun intended) and potentially could apply in your system (small or large).
The key points from this paper are pretty straight forward:
1. BSF reduce pest populations (e.g., house flies)
2. Recycle 50% of dry matter into insect matter (a major accomplishment- most efforts with food waste are at 10% conversion rate)
3. BSF are high in protein and fat
4. The proposed system is low cost and easy to implement (be careful with continuous system as there is the potential for mass die-off as a result of pathogens becoming established)
Just a few key points- hope you enjoy and I look forward to your feedback...If you cannot access it, you might consider joining ResearchGate and befriending Dr. Larry Newton as he has it posted there.
Also, here is a report prepared by Dr. Sheppard 10 years after his groundbreaking paper- something else you might find interesting.
Until next time- best of luck and happy BSF farming!
Jeff Tomberlin, PhD- BSF ecologist
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.
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