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INSECTS AS SUSTAINABLE FOOD: PART 2
July 31, 2018
Welcome to part 2 in our series on sustainability, if you haven’t already… head to part 1 where we covered a sustainable amount of ground on insects and land use.
Insects have been hailed as a sustainable alternative protein source and the food of the future.
In this post we will be talking about greenhouse gas emissions (GHG’s), and how insect farming could help manage some of the harm agricultural farming has done to our planet, and preventative measures for the future.
Here’s some of what we have learnt
- The worldwide rearing of livestock accounts for a whopping 18% of all greenhouse gases, which equates to more than all forms of transportation, which comes in at 13% (1)
- Tonnes of manure which contain harmful toxins, such as ammonia is poisoning our soil, rivers and oceans everyday (2)(3)
- Producing 1kg of protein from beef emits a massive 2,850g of GHG’s into the atmosphere, whereas 1kg of insect protein only emits 1g (1)
- To grow the amount of feed needed for livestock farming, intense methods are employed using pesticides and insecticides which destroy essential ecosystems and pollinators such as bees. (4) (5)
To round up, livestock farming is vastly unsustainable… we have to work on ways to protect ecosystems instead off destroying them and give back to the planet. Time is running out to save our planet’s precious limited resources and vital ecosystems.
But now for the good news, there is still time if we make the right changes…
So let’s consider insect protein and wander in some mind blowing facts
- Insect farming is very low maintenance, they need little feed, land and energy to create high quality protein
- Compared to cattle, insects emit 80x less methane (1)
- The circular economy of insects; they can thrive on bio waste > convert the bio waste into high quality protein > their poop is rich in minerals and can be used as fertiliser > which then can produce feed to be fed back to them
- Insect farming requires far less land (see part 1 – land use) with less deforestation, the trees have room to breathe
These little nutritional super novas may not have the hot gas, but will certainly give you the energy!
In our next post we will be taking a look at water and feed… stay tuned