Will insect farming fix our dysfunctional food system?

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22 min listen
AUTHOR: Matt Ridout
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With traditional farming using 77% of agricultural land, but only providing 18% of the world’s calories, it’s clear our food system is fairly dysfunctional. 69% of the EU’s protein-rich feed, such as soya, is imported, contributing to a growing climate crisis. With 1kg of insect protein using 99.4% less land than soy, the main ingredient in animal feed, will the UK insect farming offer a sustainable solution for the future?

To find out, we speak to Keiran Whitaker, Founder and Director, Entocycle. Entocycle is a British insect farming startup that directly addresses all of these scary inefficiencies in our current food system. The company takes a ‘circular economy’ approach to production, it takes in pre-consumer food waste such as spent coffee grounds and beer grains and utilises insect’s natural bio-conversion process to convert this waste into natural, protein-rich insects to feed animals. Join us for a fascinating look into the potential for insect farming in the UK, and the positive impact it can have on our economy and environment.

About our guest

Keiran Whitaker, Founder and Director, Entocycle

Keiran Whitaker received a bachelor’s degree in environmental design from Oxford Brookes University and a master’s degree in science from the University of Manchester.

As an environmental engineer, Whitaker saw the potential benefits to crops and livestock that come from harvesting insect protein. He launched Entocycle in 2014 to farm insects as a sustainable alternative to soy and fishmeal.

Whitaker has successfully taken Entocycle through the Mass Challenge UK Business Accelerator, the Silicon Valley Y Combinator (Silicon Valley) and the prestigious Pearse Lyons Accelerator. He has raised funding for two facilities in London and the company’s soon-to-be first commercial facility in the U.K.

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