Get maggoted and put insects on the menu

Get maggoted and put insects on the menu


Farm Online News
Black soldier fly pre pupae - ready to become flies. Photo CSIRO

Black soldier fly pre pupae - ready to become flies. Photo CSIRO

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Goterra and CSIRO tackle food waste by cooking up ways to get us eating protein rich insects.

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CSIRO is ramping up its partnership with fly farmer Goterra to put insects on the menu.

Goterra is a Canberra based start-up company that uses black soldier fly maggots to turn food waste into compost.

After working together on food waste systems, Goterra and CSIRO, with help from the University of Adelaide, are investigating which protein-rich Australian insects are the best nutritional choices for human consumption

They are also testing lighting, temperature, moisture, surface texture and diet in a bid to find the perfect combination of conditions that will encourage flies to mate.

By boosting egg-laying, Goterra will be able to breed more insects to eat through food waste and turn it into compost which reduces landfill, emissions from transporting food to landfill, and provides nutrient-rich soil fertiliser.

Goterra chief executive Olympia Yarger had the Australian soldier fly Hermetia olympiae named after her.

CSIRO's Dr Cate Paull and and Goterra chief executive Olympia Yarger at her companies production facility in Canberra.

CSIRO's Dr Cate Paull and and Goterra chief executive Olympia Yarger at her companies production facility in Canberra.

Her company is currently figuring out how to take their services to the source of food waste problems.

"We're building the technology to breed the insects and transport them to wherever there is a need, creating a mobile and versatile alternative to everything from sources of protein to landfill," Ms Yarger said.

CSIRO's Australian National Insect Collection will help identify native species as potential candidates for the edible insect industry.

Scientists will work with Aboriginal communities on such species as witjuti grubs, bogong moths and green tree ants, which are known for their citrus-tasting abdomens.

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