Black Soldier Fly Prepupae for Aquaculture Diets

Forum: Mass Production of Black Soldier Fly Prepupae for Aquaculture Diets

Published on: 01/30/2012
Author/s : Gary J. Burtle, G. Larry Newton, D. Craig Sheppard (University of Georgia)
After decades of work in Tifton, Georgia, University of Georgia researchers think soldier flies will be a viable alternative to fish meal in aquaculture diets. Early work with the black soldier fly (Hermetia illucens) used manure as the growth media, but recent efforts show that food byproducts can be a better soldier fly diet. Catfish grow well on soldier flies and other fish, including tilapia...
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star Gary J. Burtle Gary J. Burtle
Associate Professor
June 13, 2016
Are you using a slurry of manure from a flush system or manure from a scrape system? Or some other waste from swine production..
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June 13, 2016
Using damp floor gallinaza 1: 1, also fresh pig manure scraping.
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star Gary J. Burtle Gary J. Burtle
Associate Professor
June 14, 2016
Scraped manure is what we are using also.

Have you performed any microbial analysis on your soldier fly flour? And are you preparing to sell the flour or finished feed commercially? I am interested in your experience in regulatory issues. Please consider contacting me at my email: gburtle@uga.edu
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June 14, 2016
We are producing larvae for obtnecion flour and make bacteriological and nutritional quality analsis in our country has not worked this productive row, but I think they should have the same parameters of bacteriological quality of meat meal, blood and viscera .
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star Gary J. Burtle Gary J. Burtle
Associate Professor
June 14, 2016
Concerns have been raise in the US and elsewhere that E. coli, Salmonella, and Listeria may move from the pig manure into the black soldier fly larvae and then into feeds formulated using the BSF meal, flour or oil. In preparation for an application to the US Food and Drug Administration, I am collecting research observations from any studies that involve food safety measurements with the black soldier fly larvae and pre-pupae.
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June 15, 2016
Dear Prof Gary and participants,

Hope everyone is doing well!!

Referring my earlier comments and discussion, it was anticipated that EU will have to clear number of constraints linked with the commercial/practical farming of insects prior approving the meal in animal feed. Not only the microbial residual and transmission issues but also several issues like heavy metal, final nutrient profile etc. will be raised. No doubt, the insect meal industry is still in fancy. Thus, we need to focus on the revision of the common practice in insect farming. I will be more than happy to share personally with you our recent findings, Black soldier fly grown on safe and sustainable substrate, underutilised crops Sesbania was found to be devoid of any heavy metal or microbial residue.

Thanks Prof. for the sharing and lets keep open the dialogue, whenever such issue arises and we come across.

Have a nice one
Kumar Katya
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star Gary J. Burtle Gary J. Burtle
Associate Professor
June 15, 2016

An interesting article, which you may have read, points to certain metals in insects grown from different substrates at different locations:
Charlton, et al.
Journal of Insects as Food and Feed, 2015; 1(1): 7-16

The need to characterize each product is required by US FDA for products derived from processing of manure. The opportunity to use processed manures, byproducts and underutilized crops is open, pending application to FDA and definition of the product safety and composition.

Use of distillers grains as a substrate will, perhaps, be the test for a commercial insect meal in the US.

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Adesegun olowu Adesegun olowu
Process control and Automation Engineer
October 26, 2016

Afam get in contact with me on Adesegunt@yahoo.co.uk. I also live in Nigeria and have been working to start BSF breeding also. We could combine effort and share resources.
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Paul Roberts Paul Roberts
Biologist
November 1, 2016
As with any "feed" culturing scheme some things must be considered: Bio-concentration of heavy metals, Chlorinated compounds, antibiotic resistant bacteria and so on. There is a "cost" to consider; how efficient is the conversion of the raw material to product? Any trophic level jump costs energy and produces waste, meaning the price of the feedstock (it is not free, transport, standardization, storage and sterilization all cost money) must be divided by the Feed Conversion Ratio (FCR) just as a fish farmer does for his operation. This can be done on the crude material basis, protein basis, energy basis and the important one; Money Basis.
Ongoing feedstock availability, land zoning, operation security, shut down process and its bonding and overcoming the Public's "Yuk" feelings all must be anticipated.
Early Trout producers put meat on racks so the maggots would drop to the fish but in the end direct feeding of the meat was more productive.
After the policy and technological challenges are overcome the remains the big questions: Can enough be produced to reduce the fish meal need of Aquaculture and can it be profitable?
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Karsten Schroeder Karsten Schroeder
Consultant
November 2, 2016
To come up with sizable volume of BSF meal - yes! very desirable. But where does BSF meal production happen by now on commercial scale? If the calculation is right and factors in all aspects, BSF still can be profitable, even for large farms. Thus, the benefit can be for the 'well established' fish farmer with relatively safe economic setting and potential to go for BSF -commercial. However, I foresee a direct tangible benefit for small scale farmers/ house hold operators who will produce maggots for direct feeding in a homestead pond. Minimum financial input for equipment/ hardware, max input for training for fighting the 'devils in the detail' on the way to maggot production. I'am eager to make this come reality in rural Bangladesh
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star Gary J. Burtle Gary J. Burtle
Associate Professor
November 2, 2016
Substrate cost is a key element, even when environmental conditions are very good, like they are in Bangladesh. Using BSF larvae as the sole fish feed may not be the best thing to do, since the high fat content of the larvae is more than the fish need. Perhaps that contributes to the findings of some fish nutritionists that BSF is not a good ingredient. Also, BSF does not contain long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids, unless they have been added to the larval diet.
Please look into the rural development project carried out in Indonesia. They used palm kernel meal as the substrate since the meal could be obtained at a low cost and the PKM was not contaminated with pathogens or pollutants.
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November 3, 2016
Please give us the reference to the palm kernal work in Indonesia. Thanks.
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star Gary J. Burtle Gary J. Burtle
Associate Professor
November 3, 2016
Project FISH-DIVA,Maggot – Bioconversion Research Program in Indonesia Concept of New Food Resources, Results and Applications, 2005-2011, Final Report' Saurin HEM, November 2011,Centre for Aquaculture Research and Development Research Institute for Ornamental Fish

Also:
Valorization of Palm Kernel Meal (PKM), a by-product from palm oil agro industry, via Bioconversion: a natural process of particular interest for the development of aquaculture in Indonesia International Conference on Oil Palm and Environment, ICOPE 2007 (Posters session) 15-16 November 2007, Bali (Indonesia), Saurin Hem1, Melta Rini2, Chumaidi2 , Maskur3, Ahmad Hadadi3, Supriyadi4, Ediwarman4, Michel Larue1 and Laurent Pouyaud1
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November 4, 2016
Thanks
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Paul Roberts Paul Roberts
Biologist
December 13, 2016
Corn and grain distillers dried grains and solubles have been used as fish feed ingredients since the 1960's so they may pass as acceptable ingredients to feed the flies. Sugar fermentation is a natural protein concentration procedure that produces a toxic but salable fuel and solvent. The problem with cellulosic fermentation is the different processes and producers all leave dissimilar residues some are chemically contaminated however. Standardization and commoditization means you can sell the product or buy it because it is certified to meet a specification.
The biggest barrier to industrial scale production is the collection, transport, standardization (making the substrate consistent so you can estimate the expected production) and storage. If you are daily collecting the food waste from grocery stores, restaurants and food processors: What is the value per unit weight that enables the transport to at least break even on fuel and amortization of the truck?
What is the status of experimental production of fish on such a feed or directly of the flies? Are the fish acceptable to regular marketing?
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star Gary J. Burtle Gary J. Burtle
Associate Professor
December 14, 2016
All good questions. I feel that low value substrates are the best for BSF intended for the animal feed ingredient market. Economics will ultimately determine how much traditional feed ingredients are used to prepare a substrate. Fore example, I am testing a wheat bran plus duckweed substrate. The process must be planned in order to avoid metal accumulation by the duckweed then by the BSF. As you noticed, transportation of the material must be kept to a minimum. In some cases that determines the stability of the product analysis. For example, we used brewers grains from one brewery when it was selling for $40 per ton. When the cost rose to $100 per ton and higher, we stopped. The beef and dairy sectors had outbid us. Now we see that soybean meal cost is lower than a few years ago, so interest in higher-priced alternatives is waning. Fish meal is brought into the argument, but really BSF meal will compete with other protein concentrates that, when blended, form fish meal-analogues.
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December 21, 2016
Dear Gary,

few months ago, you wrote: "Use of distillers grains as a substrate will, perhaps, be the test for a commercial insect meal in the US" Will you please explain with some details what do you mean with this test?
Thanks
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star Gary J. Burtle Gary J. Burtle
Associate Professor
December 21, 2016
In the US, distillers grains is available as a byproduct of ethanol production. This is a corn byproduct that has a Food and Drug Administration feed ingredient number, required to show standard composition and accepted processing methods. A temporary feed number has been granted by FDA for black soldier fly larvae, if the substrate is a byproduct already defined by a feed ingredient number. The further restriction of the temporary feed number for BSF is that it can be sold and fed to salmonid fish. Those restrictions were made due to the body of research findings presented to the regulatory agency.

The distillers grains is just one byproduct with feed-grade classification by FDA, so other substrates are possible, as long as they have been previously approved. Unfortunately, the current temporary number for BSF is very narrow in the species use. Other BSF products would need to be submitted for separate approval consideration.
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December 21, 2016
Thanks Gary
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December 22, 2016
Dear Gary,

Thanks for the detailed. In deed, new information that a byproduct should have FDA approval prior using as substrates. I am sure, we all are well aware that, insect meal has already been permitted in aquafeeds last week. I would like also share my personal experience, high fiber content substrates (I used underutilized plant products) is suppressing the fish growth at higher FM replacement level. While, comparing these results with others, I experienced, the efficacy of insect meal (irrespective of species) hardly up to 50% of FM. The core problem for this limitations could be the substrates derived from plant materials. Thus, we need think and approach differently to develop substrates
Merry Christmas and very happy new year to you and all the participants .
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Gary J. Burtle
Gary J. Burtle
Associate Professor
  Tifton, Georgia, United States
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Gary J. Burtle Gary J. Burtle
Tifton, Georgia, United States
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