Our objective is to produce the most biologically sustainable form of Animal Protein of its kind in the world! Nurturing one of most symbiotically holistic relationships between man and the environment, on a continent where Entomophagy has been around for centuries, and where quantities of insects consumed, are measured in the thousands of tons.
By adopting this practically proven method which is ideally suited to our harsh African climatic conditions, we are able to produce in excess of 50 tons of Animal Protein - Mopane Worms, Crickets and Locusts - per hectare per annum… unheard of in any other form of crop or livestock farming around the world.
This project will be undertaken in a region of Southern Africa where unemployment runs at close to 90%. 85% of the people involved in the project, will be women.
Establishing a commercial farming operation in Africa is always done in stages, especially when it comes down to your staff compliment, as to when they’ll be joining your team…apart from trying to keep your initial costs down, it would be pointless paying for a Vet or an Entomologist when you’re still building your facilities and have no livestock on the farm.
With 25 years of practical farming experience behind me I’ll be responsible for the day to day running of the farm. Our 3 Sons, each of whom has chosen to specialise in a specific field relevant to this project, will be joining me on the farm
as will a number of our ex farm employees from our farm in Zimbabwe, and who now reside in South Africa.
The initial 5 Hectare Net House will be erected by a company specializing in Net and Greenhouse construction. We will second several of our own employees to their team in order for us to erect our own Net Houses in the future, using our own employees. We’ve had several offers from established Cricket and Locust Farmers around the world who’d be willing to assist us during the initial design and build stages.
We’ve also received a number of requests, both local and from abroad, from Entomologists, Biologists, Food Nutritionists and Researchers, to name a few, who would be interested in working with us on the project. A Senior Entomologist who I’ve known for many years and who is based in the UK, with many years experience working on projects around the world, will be part of our team. We will keep the Investors posted as to who joins our team, in what role, and when.
My name is Iain Foulds and I am the person behind this project, which all began a little over twenty years ago on our farm in Zimbabwe, where our family had been farming for close on a century.
My objective at the time was to prove sustainable scalability of a particular insect species in a large scale captive breeding programme. With the aim of incorporating them into a feeding scheme for our 400 employees and their families, all of whom lived on the farm.
Unfortunately the political situation in Zimbabwe forced us into placing the project in ”dormancy” mode, to be revived at a later date.
Having witnessed the adverse environmental devastation - including a decline in Guinea Fowl, Jackal and Fish Eagle numbers on our farm -
caused by the continuous use of insecticides, herbicides and nitrogenous fertilizers over a thirty year period while growing 1500 acres of soya beans, maize, cotton and wheat, I began to question the fundamentals associated with crop farming.
EXCESSIVE OVER HARVESTING
Unfortunately, excessive over-harvesting of the Mopane Worm has led to localised extinction of the species across thousands of kilometres of Mopane Woodlands, forcing entire village communities living within these areas to seek an alternative source of revenue.
Unfortunately their only option is the Mopane Tree itself. Being a highly sort after hardwood around the world, it has many uses including charcoal, wood for BBQ’s and furniture. This is leading to illegal logging, deforestation, and a complete collapse of the family unit.
It’s imperative we address these problems now, before it is too late.
Our aim is to release between 5% and 10% of our captive bred Mopane Worm stock, in egg form, back into these affected areas.
THE LEADING INSECT FARMING STARTUPS IN EUROPE
Ynsect and InnovaFeed, two French companies, have raised €150m between them in the past eight months, over and above what they have already raised.
Protix in Holland has raised in excess of €45m for their insect farm.
AgriProtein, named as one of the UK’s 10 most disruptive businesses, has raised a total of €107m to date .
There are a number of other startups that I have not mentioned, but who have raised millions of Euros between them.
Our Ambition is to establish a Commercial Insect Farming Operation in Southern Africa. Producing the most sustainable form of animal protein of its kind in the world in the place where it actually makes sense
Current sources of animal protein for human consumption are unsatisfactory due to environmental impact. Plant based alternatives deliver lower protein levels.
In the US and Europe, cost of insect farming is high, sustainable feed sources are unavailable and human consumption requires a behaviour change.
In Southern Africa, where insect consumption is widespread and measured in the thousands of tons, supply is seasonal, erratic and insufficient, and over-harvesting has led to localised extinction of certain species and deforestation.
Unemployment, poverty and hunger affect 2 in 5 people across Southern Africa.
Aquaculture and animal feed industries rely on fish meal as an unsustainable protein source for animal feed...Insect protein is a sustainable alternative.
Our commercial insect farming operation will
farm edible insect species where they naturally occur and where sustainable feed sources are available and grown on the farm.
Produce insect protein at a fraction of the cost of European Insect farmers.
Serve a large existing market with a high volume and a steady year-round supply.
Provide an alternative sustainable source of animal protein to the existing aquaculture, crocodile and free range poultry farming industries, as well as the pet food industry. Create livelihoods for up to a million people in the region, of whom 85% will be women. Replenish the wild Mopane Worm population by releasing between 5% and 10% of our captive bred stock, in the form of eggs, back into affected areas in the wild
THE CUSTOMER BASE
250 million people in Southern Africa who regularly include insects in the diet, but have no access to year round supply.
Tilapia and Crocodile Farmers in Southern Africa are in desperate need of a sustainable source of animal protein as an alternative to fish meal, which is unsustainable, extremely expensive and not always available.
The European Aquaculture Industry is looking for large volumes of a sustainable but affordable source of animal Protein, as is the pet food industry.
NGO‘s and Hunger Relief Agencies are all looking for a sustainable protein source to include in their feeding schemes and disaster relief programmes e.g. protein biscuits, protein bars and dry a cereal base...all of which can be made using insect protein. Thousands of cafes and restaurants throughout sub Saharan Africa regularly include insects on their menus
- Operations -
25 years of practical experience running our family‘s intensive mixed
farming operation in Zimbabwe
- Farm Manager -
- Assistant Manager -