Frequently Asked Questions

Question & Answer About

Insect Science

Which insect species do you farm?

At the moment we only farm yellow mealworms, which have the scientific name Tenebrio molitor (“Tenebrio” meaning ‘darkness’ as mealworms love the dark, and “molitor” meaning ‘miller’ as meal worms historically buried themselves in sacks of flour). In fact, mealworms are not actually worms but are the larvae of the Darkling beetle. In the near future we look forward to expanding our farm to include house crickets, which have the scientific name Acheta domesticus.

Where in the world do mealworms naturally occur?

It is thought that mealworms originated in the Mediterranean, and by hitching a lift within bags of flour and grains that were being shipped around the world they managed to become settled within North America and Europe.

Are mealworms edible to humans?

Yes, mealworms are one of the most popular edible insect species for human consumption and are said to taste mild and nutty with a hint of spice. They offer many nutritional benefits, including high levels of protein, iron, calcium, antioxidants, minerals and vitamins (including B12 and B5), and they rich in the beneficial fatty acids Omega 3 and Omega 6. However, at present mealworm products have not been approved for use in human foods within the European Union as they are classed as ‘Novel Foods’, and therefore require further examination before being permitted for human consumption.

What do you feed your mealworms with?

We largely rear our mealworms with spent grain which is collected as a by-product from local breweries. The spent grain is packed full of nutrients that are easily digestible by mealworms, allowing us to utilize this local resource and contribute to the circular economy.

Question & Answer About

Insect Science

What is the regulatory status on insects in animal feed?

The yellow mealworm Tenebrio molitor and associated derived proteins have already been approved for use in aquaculture feed and pet feed within the European Union. Current legislation prevents proteins derived from Tenebrio molitor from being fed to poultry, however the feeding of whole insects is currently allowed. There has been an indication from the European Commission that it may approve the use of insect derived proteins in poultry feed in the near future.

How do you raise and harvest the mealworms?

We are continually striving to improve animal welfare, and we ensure our larvae are well cared for by rearing them in social groups with a contaminant-free, nutritionally balanced diet. Mealworms like to be warm and moist, so our automatic sensors make sure that their rearing pens are kept at a toasty 25°C. Once the larvae reach maturity, they are frozen which results in a rapid death that minimises stress.

Where do you deliver to?

We deliver throughout the UK and southern Ireland, providing a sustainable feed solution without the need for international imports and helping to move the UK feed industry towards a net zero emissions future. We also deliver to the EU and North America. If you are based outside of this region and are interested in our products, please get in touch as we’d love to hear from you.

Do you use growth hormones or antibiotics in your farm?

Reared on a contaminant-free, healthy diet our mealworms naturally grow fast. By raising our stock in a controlled environment we don’t need to use antibiotics to control disease, therefore avoiding the issue of antibiotic resistance that is becoming increasingly common in industrial animal agriculture.


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