From June 24 till 28 the second edition of the Summer School Insects as Food & Feed – from producing to consuming, was organized. The field of rearing insects for human food and animal feed is relative new, but gaining a lot of attention lately and holds promising implications for a more sustainable global food production.
From producing to consuming
The Summer School programme provided participants the opportunity to learn the basic principles behind the factors that affect all processes in the insect production and consumption chain from genetics, rearing, handling, processing and consuming insects as food or feed. The course addressed for example business models for starting an ‘insect-company’, marketing and promotion of insect products, the microbiology aspects, developments in (EU) regulations and scenario’s for outcomes of (novel food) legislation. Also talks on specific production systems like the Black Soldier Fly where held. The participants were challenged to understand and apply this information in their daily practice by developing strategies.
Insects as Food & Feed is a topic which has grown over the last year's and is still growing, as they are protein rich and could contribute to the development of a more sustainable Food Chain. Wageningen University & Research held a lecture serie on the topic and was recently assigned a miljon dollar research project on insects as animal feed.
Course leader & Experts
The course offered a mix of lectures by Wageningen University & Research and international experts from research institutes, talks by entrepreneurs, group work and a visit to KU Leuven and Thomas More in Belgium. With the expertise, network and enthusiasm of course leader Arnold van Huis, emeritus professor Wageningen University & Research, it was possible to invite an impressive amount of guest lecturers that contributed to the success of the programme –a true overview from production to consumption.
The succes of last year's and this year's edition was brought together by the presentation of one of the former attendees, who explained how much impact the Summer School made and still has on his work in the field of Insects as Food & Feed.
The Summer Schoolattracted participants from all over the world. They were mainly young entrepreneurs and researchers who inspired and learned a lot from each other and went home with an extended network and lot of information to process and implement into businesses.
The Summer School was rated with a 4.8 on a score from 1(low) to 5 (high). Especially the programme set up, organization, contact and expertise of the lecturers, both WUR and guest received high scores.