Insects - 3. Research and development

Jonas Lembcke Andersen

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Insects pincet

Insects - 3. Research and development

Our research and development projects are mainly centered around three species of insects: Hermetia Illucens (Black Soldier Fly), Tenebrio molitor (Common mealworm) and Alphitobius diaperinus (Lesser mealworm/Buffalo).

The primary areas of our interest are nutrition (feed), reproduction, genetics and physiology. We are involved in different kinds of projects both small InnoBooster projects with individual companies supported by Innovation Fund Denmark and large projects that often involve several participating companies.


Superior Feed - a new R&D area at DTI

The world needs a recourse-effective and environmentally friendly feed source with a positive influence on animal health to reduce the use of antibiotics. Therefore, DTI has established an R&D area aiming to develop Superior insect products with tailored nutrient profiles, health beneficial properties and low environmental impacts.

DTI’s insect team is focusing on feed optimization, enrichment of insect products, and application of sensory technology to achieve these goals.

For more info, click here.


Current projects


The aim of this project is to develop effective, easy to implement and cost advantaged oviposition solutions for the reproduction of Black Soldier Fly (BSF). In order to achieve this aim, a series of chemical compounds will be characterized and used for developing an effective odour attractant for BSF. Furthermore, a dispersing apparatus and egg collectors will be developed during the project. Consequently, the new developed products will be tested and optimized individually and as an integrated solution at laboratory scale before being demonstrated in a production setup.

Supported by: EUREKA and Innovation Fund Denmark

Insects: Hermetia illucens (Black Soldier Fly Larvae)

Partners: FreezeM, Dansk Insektautomation ApS

Project period: 2021-2023


RECIPE – Revivable Eggs by Cryopreservation for Insect Production Enhancement

The project goal is to make the production of Black Soldier Fly (BSF) cost-effective as a sustainable source of protein for animal feed by increasing efficiency, stabilizing production, and reducing the costs, complexity and risks for existing and new BSF producers. We want to reduce the operational costs of BSFL production, increase production capacity, and by that enabling the emergence of smarter and smaller factories in the proximity of residue streams. The long-term preservation of different genetic strains will ensure stable production in case of disease outbreaks or colony collapse.

Supported by: Eurostars

Insects: Hermetia illucens (Black Soldier Fly Larvae)

Partners: FreezeM, Bühler Insect Technology Solutions

Project period: 2021-2022 (2 years)


In EntoPower, an innovative production concept, strongly inspired by industrial concepts for automated processes, is developed. The new heating and ventilation system (EntoPower HVAC System) aims to capitalize on this untapped energy efficiency potential and also reduces the total energy consumption in production. Through this, the new EntoPower HVAC System will strengthen the green image of insects as a new protein source. In the project, a demo-scale HVAC system will be developed, which will require development within the BSLF production concept, based on optimizing cooling, humidifying and heat recovery.

Supported by: EUDP (The Danish Energy Technology Development and Demonstration Program)

Insects: Hermetia illucens (Black Soldier Fly Larvae)

Partners: Dansk Insektautomation ApS, Hermetia Baruth GmbH, Skov A/S

Project period: 2020-22



In this project, Danish Technological Institute (DTI) in close collaboration with Daka Refood Denmark A/S (DAK) and Dansk Insekt Automation ApS (DIA), seek to make better use of former foodstuffs by feeding it to Black Soldier Fly Larvae (BSFL) and, in return, making use of both the larvae for non-food applications (e.g. pet food) and the insect frass for soil improvement. In an earlier project, WICE, we saw how efficient BSFL were at converting organic household waste into: i) high quality BSFL protein for mink production; and ii) insect frass suitable to be used as fertilizer; while upcycling the organic household waste by 80 percent.

Supported by: MUDP (the Danish Eco-Innovation Program)

Insects: Hermetia illucens (Black Soldier Fly Larvae)

Partners: DAKA Denmark A/S, Hannemann Engineering ApS

Project period: 2019-2021


Previous projects


(Insect Value Chain in a Circular Bioeconomy) will create a sustainable resource-efficient industry for animal protein production based on mealworms. The goal is that inVALUABLE can facilitate Danish and European industrial insect production in the coming years and be the enabler of new market opportunities for insects as feed, food and other high-value components.

Supported by: Innovation Fund Denmark

Insects: Tenebrio molitor (Common mealworm) and Alphitobius diaperinus (Lesser mealworm/buffalo larvae)

Project period: 2017-2019



The organic fraction of household waste constitutes an important resource that Danish municipalities increasingly wish to recycle in the best possible way. The WICE project will identify the technological and economic potential by allowing insects (fly larvae) to convert source-separated organic household waste and subsequently use the produced insect biomass as feed for mink.

The development work includes testing the produced larvae as feed in mink production and uncovering the potential of the residual fraction for biogas production and/or growth media for plants.

Supported by: MUDP (the Danish Eco-Innovation Program)

Insect: Hermetia Illucens (Black Soldier Fly)

Project period: 2016-2017



(Sustainable Mealworm Production for Feed and Food) supports an adequate and sustainable food production for the increasing global population. The project focuses on:

1) development of an optimized low-cost-feed formula based on organic residues and waste products for optimal growth and quality of mealworms

2) expansion and automation of the existing larvae production system at Proti-Farm, including investigation of a digital monitoring system that can assess the health and growth of larvae.

Supported by: EUROSTARS

Insect: Alphitobius diaperinus (Lesser mealworm/Buffalo larvae)

Project period: 2015-2017



(Valorization of organic side streams through bioconversion with Insects). The aim of this project is to develop a profitable and sustainable concept of feed production for mealworms by using selected residue and waste streams from the food industry. The quality of mealworms will be assessed in terms of their nutritional composition and sales opportunities as fish feed.

Supported by: GUDP (The Danish Agricultural Agency)

Insect: Tenebrio molitor (Common mealworm)

Project period: 2015-2017