Closing the loop: Exploiting sustainable insect production to improve soil, crop and animal health

Insects have tremendous potential for utilizing the waste generated from other agricultural sectors to produce high value protein. The by-product of insect production, insect waste streams (IWS), can be recycled and repurposed for promoting the health of crops and soil, thereby contributing to circular agriculture. Experts anticipate that IWS will be able to reduce the need for farmers to use chemically-based plant protection products.

Assuming IWS is one day able to be sold as a crop and soil health promoter, its success (or failure) in the market will be heavily dependent on farmers’ decision making behavior. Behavior can be motivated by both economic and non-economic intentions. Such motivations are investigated in this research. The anticipated results of this research will be important for researchers, policy makers, IWS producers, and extension workers to recognize and understand the needs of farmers and facilitate more effective innovation diffusion of responsible and sustainable food production solutions.