General Introduction

Overall context –  Insects as food & feed

Our planet faces huge challenges because of the growing population and increasing competition for scarce resources.

  • Whereas the global population is expected to reach 9 billion by 2050, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) estimates that the world needs to increase its food production by 70% by that time, mostly to feed such growing population.
  • Meat consumption & demand is forecasted to increase by 72% between 2000 & 2030, whilst 60 MT proteins are forecasted to be missing by 2030 in order to meet the expected demand.
  • Animal feed production is increasingly competing for resources (land, water & fertilizers) with human food and/or fuel production. This contributes to increase the pressure on the environment (e.g. water supply, deforestation or soil decline in producing countries).

IPIFF and its Members believe that insects as food & feed are part of the solution.

Insects as food

insect bars production - Insects As Food & Feed

Whilst insects are already part of the staple diet of around 2.5 billion people worldwide, several indicators show that insects may soon become a widely accepted component of western societies diets, which includes Europe.

  • Insects contain nutrient levels which are particularly pertinent for human consumption (Insects are particularly rich in protein & containing essential amino acids, fatty acids, vitamins and minerals).
  • Edible insects have a well-balanced nutrient profile to respond to human’s dietary needs.

Insects for animal feed

Key points also emerge from research studies indicating that insects have a number of features which make them well-suited for use in animal feed.

  • Insects contribute a high protein contentment, while being rich in other beneficial nutrients such as fats, minerals and vitamins.
  • Protein concentration levels in insect proteins intended for animal feed vary between 55% & 75%.
  • Insects are characterised by higher feed conversion rate and so can become a highly valuable source of feed for farm animals (2013 FAO study; Wageningen UR Livestock Research, 2012).
  • Insects are a natural component of the diets of animals such as carnivorous fish, poultry & pigs (e.g. insects can provide up to 70% of the trout diet needs).
animal feed for fish