Turning insects into fertilizer, feed and oil

Turning bugs into fertilizer, feed and oil

4 minutes, 37 seconds Read

With a few vans at a time waste streams are introduced into Protix’ manufacturing facility in Bergen op Zoom, the Netherlands. And, many larvae are fairly content material with that because it feeds them totally. With that, they’re forming the idea of each new protein-rich animal feed merchandise and natural fertilizer for horticulture. 

This fertilizer is the bridge to the agricultural and horticultural sectors, however the manufacturing methodology additionally has clear interfaces with the sector. The manufacturing of the bugs takes place in a multi-layer cultivation facility. 

Protix’s facility in Bergen op Zoom, the Netherlands

Protix has been producing on the web site pictured above since 2019, the identical yr wherein the constructing was formally opened by King Willem-Alexander. “It marked a big development step for us,” says Elselina Battenberg, Communications Supervisor at Protix.

“Our manufacturing capability at this facility can’t be matched anyplace else on the earth. Furthermore, we now have been increasing much more quickly since then. “

King Willem-Alexander pictured through the official opening of Protix’s new facility 

On the time, Elselina had simply joined while Protix was developing of the brand new constructing. “4 years in the past there have been fifty of us, now that quantity has already tripled. It displays the steep development of the corporate, which humorous sufficient is about the identical development cycle of larvae of the black soldier flies.”

Thijs Kapteijns 

Soil improver for horticulture 
Protix’s merchandise are utilized in horticulture, particularly the Flytilizer. Thijs Kapteijns, Enterprise Developer Fertilizer, explains, “Our larvae upcycle residual streams – from potato processing as only one instance – leading to proteins and lipids. Throughout this course of, one other residual stream arises consisting of the skins and excrement of the larvae that are reused as fertilizer. We have seen enormous demand for natural fertilizer as effectively prior to now years, which completely matches what we provide.” 

Flytilizer is utilized in agricultural and horticultural soils and in potting soil

Greenhouse growers don’t merely use Flytilizer as a result of it’s natural, but in addition as a result of the product is Skal-certified. The product shouldn’t be but relevant for water tradition, a method typically utilized in vertical farms. “It will be nice to provide to vertical farms as effectively, over time.” 

The origin of the corporate in 2009 was to develop sustainable feed, with a sustainable substitute for fishmeal as a primary idea. Along with co-founder Tarique Arsiwalla, the present CEO Kees Aarts based Protix to determine insect cultivation as an trade. 

On the time, mealworms have been actually solely produced for fishing, so this was ground-breaking work. Following two years of greenhouse trials, the 2 founders succeeded in rising bugs commercially, and shortly wanted to maneuver to a bigger facility. 

The enlargement story of Protix is proudly displayed within the Bergen op Zoom facility (Click on right here to zoom) 

Self-developed approach
In 2019, Protix relocated its manufacturing from Dongen to Bergen op Zoom. And as an alternative of a greenhouse, you will now discover a self-developed multi-layer cultivation system.

“The Dongen II manufacturing facility shaped the idea for the constructing we’re in now. Future premises might be constructed alongside the identical traces, though we are going to proceed to develop in fact.”

The multi-layer manufacturing facility 

The manufacturing facility is extremely automated, with little or no human interplay inside the manufacturing facility. Billions of bugs crawl round contained in the hundreds of crates which are transported by robots and positioned on conveyor programs to both feed them or transfer them onto the following course of. 

As soon as totally grown – usually after about eight days – the crate contents are separated and processed. The bugs are processed into protein meal, fluid fats and puree. Remaining are the pores and skin and droppings, that are processed into insect frass, the idea for the Flytilizer and Frassor garden fertilizer merchandise for customers. 

Thijs in entrance of a rack filled with insect-based merchandise

Moreover rising and processing the bugs, Protix additionally has a devoted area for breeding. One % of the bugs are stored for mum or dad traces to create new bugs from. To maintain innovating, the corporate is collaborating with an insect breeder to always enhance its merchandise. 

Consider larvae, for example, that are much more environment friendly in changing totally different sorts of waste streams. Compared to the earlier years, the larvae have significantly elevated in measurement.

“All these swarming larvae packed in a crate collectively generate plenty of warmth. That is why local weather management within the manufacturing facility is vital, simply as in common vertical farms,” Thijs provides. 

Larvae and the black soldier fly (beneath)

Protix’s merchandise at the moment are being processed by different corporations into merchandise for (pet) meals, livestock and aqua feed. Nonetheless, bugs are additionally suitable for eating, and society is steadily gearing up for this with frontrunners mentioning the sustainability and protein side of this type of food plan. 

Elselina provides: “We’re already trying into shopper merchandise. We have now allotted manufacturing for 3 bugs for people: crickets, mealworms and grasshoppers. For each insect and manufacturing methodology, we’re obliged to submit an utility beneath the EU Novel Meals Regulation.” 

The corporate is planning on submitting extra functions sooner or later. Within the meantime, the corporate prides itself on substituting environmentally unfriendly merchandise corresponding to meat, soya and palm oil. Not directly, these merchandise have an effect on the remainder of the meals chain as people are the principle finish customers of those merchandise, corresponding to hen. 

For extra data: 
Van Konijnenburgweg 86
4612 PL Bergen op Zoom
+31 162 782501
gross sales@protix.eu 


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