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Online talk April 2023 – Arnold van Huis
5 April @ 19:30 – 20:45
The Royal Entomological Society organises insect science conferences and events around the UK and the world for people at all stages of career and interest.
Becoming a member entitles you to discounted (and sometimes free) access to the majority of events.
The Royal Entomological Society’s online talk series
These online meetings take place on the first Wednesday of the month from 19.30 to 20.45 (UK time).
There will also be an opportunity to hear some exciting updates about the Society and its activities.
Note: All attendees, including members, must register below to receive the link to attend the talk.
Speaker: Arnold van Huis
Professor of Tropical Entomology
Wageningen University, Netherlands.
Edible Insects: Progress and Prospects
During the last six years the number of articles dealing with edible insects increased exponentially. As feed for animals, the black soldier fly is often targeted, mainly because the larvae can transform many different organic side streams of low economic value in high value proteins and fats.
Microbial communities in substrates and the insect gut may help in the conversion of low-quality organic side streams. The nutritional values of insect products compare well to those of the common meat products. Health benefits of insects relate to the high content of polyunsaturated fatty acids, the high iron and zinc content, the antioxidant capacity, and the positive effects on the gut microbiota. Chitin strengthens the immune system in humans and in animals, improves plant growth and activates plant defense. The fat of insects can be technology applied as bio lubricants, biodiesel, cosmetics, and butter replacements in bakery products. Proteins can be employed as a base for bioplastics used for agricultural purposes. The environmental impact of producing insects is lower than that of common production animals. Legislation is gradually becoming more conducive.
A major challenge for human consumption is to process insects and disguise them in familiar products and make them safe and appetizing. Several strategies are proposed to convince consumers to go from an occasional snack to mainstream food. Professor Arnold Van Huis is Chief Editor of the Journal of Insects as Food and Feed and researches and advocates edible insects both for humans and for livestock.
In the 2010 French documentary Global Steak, he says that locusts can produce 1kg protein from 2kg fodder compared to a cow needing 10kg fodder to produce the same amount of protein. Other benefits are that locusts do not produce greenhouse gases and do not need antibiotics.