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UGANDA - INSFEED projects catalogs insects available for use in fish feed

The INSFEED project is cataloging insects in sub-Saharan Africa with a goal of using them for animal feed. The project is developing an open-access inventory of insects detailing specific nutritional qualities of commonly-found and easily-reared insects. “So far, an Africa-based list of 500 species of insects have been identified as a starting point and this will help us focus on the species with the most potential for use in poultry and fish feed.” A main goal of the project is to reduce the need for fodder plants and their associated fertilizers, thereby mitigating climate change.

November 29, 2018


Dr. Sunday Ekwesi the program leader at Insect feed for poultry and fish production in sub-Saharan Africa (INSFEED), who investigated how insects can be utilized for animal feed, said using insects as feed limits the level of harmful gases being released into the environment.

“Insects are an excellent source of proteins with nutritional qualities similar to those of meat and fish and could be used in animal feed as a significant way to contribute to food security and reduce emissions into the atmosphere,” said Dr Ekwesi.

A paper released by Dr. Ekwesi titled Grubs up: insects for nutritious animal feed says livestock farming currently accounts for around 18% of human-induced global emissions, which will increase with rising demand for animal products.

The paper adds that as the demand increases, so does the necessity for livestock feed, of which protein is the most expensive component (provided usually in powder form, as well in granules from soybean and fishmeal).

“Nitrous oxide is released from fertilizers applied to fodder crops grown for livestock feed and using insects as feed, instead of fodder, limits the level of harmful gases being released. 25 kgs of feed are required to produce 1 kg of beef compared to 2.2 kgs required to produce 1 kg of crickets,” explains Dr. Ekwesi.

“We can, therefore, play a role in mitigating climate change as well as ensuring protein and other essential minerals are available in nutritious animal feed,” adds Dr. Ekwesi.

INSFEED is developing an open-access inventory of insects detailing specific nutritional qualities of commonly-found and easily-reared insects.

“So far, an Africa-based list of 500 species of insects have been identified as a starting point and this will help us focus on the species with the most potential for use in poultry and fish feed,” explains Dr. Ekwesi.

He revealed that they are looking at appropriate insects with basic requirements for rearing and harvesting in Uganda like grasshoppers, crickets, black flies, fruit flies and beetles and that the next step will be to develop rearing and harvesting guidelines for small-scale farmers.

Click here to learn more about the INSFEED project. 

Source: PML Daily // Original Article

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