Invertapro raises and processes yellow mealworms, upcycling local organic waste into a protein-rich ingredient for food products and animal feed.
Insects can help to feed the world’s growing population, which is expected to reach some 10 billion in 2050.
With low CO₂ emissions, minimal use of land and water and a unique ability to upcycle organic waste, insect farming can provide healthy, valuable proteins. These proteins can be used as an ingredient in food products for human consumption as well as in animal feed.
Invertapro upcycles organic waste from local communities to rear yellow mealworm larvae, Tenebrio molitor. The resulting insect meal is nutritious and protein-rich with high potential for use in aquaculture feed. It is a viable alternative to fish oil and fishmeal – traditional ingredients which are becoming scarcer. It is also a sustainable replacement for soy – a commonly used plant-based alternative which reduces demand on marine resources, but intensifies pressures on agricultural land.
Insects are part of the wild salmon’s diet and research has indicated that insect meal can also increase the appetite of the fish. Fish show the same growth performance with insect meal feeds compared to traditional aquaculture feed.
Under the Feed-X programme, Invertapro is collaborating with Skretting, a world-leading manufacturer of aquaculture feed, to develop and commercialise production of an insect-based salmon feed.
Yellow mealworms and insect meal produced by Invertapro are highly sustainable, with low CO₂ emissions, and minimal water and land use.
Invertapro has also created a circular economy by feeding the larvae fermented food waste and by using all by-products of insect production to make Bløme, a certified organic fertiliser. The fertiliser contains chitin (exoskeleton), which has a positive effect on the plants’ immune system and can reduce the use of chemical pesticides.
The global insect feed market was valued at roughly USD 688 million in 2018 and is projected to reach about USD 1.4 million by 2024. As of 2018, the aquaculture segment dominated the market with a share of 51 per cent.
Invertapro is a member of the EU’s EIT Climate-KIC Accelerator. The company is also collaborating with partners to develop an insect-based dog food. It sells insect snacks for human consumption on the website Larveriet.no.
Invertapro is a member of NCE Heidner Biocluster, Norway’s national cluster for bioeconomy and sustainable food production.