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Bioconversion, sustainable animal feed


By 2050, global animal feed will need to be increased by 50% to meet the needs of a growing population, and in particular protein requirements. However, the current livestock system is responsible for the emission of 7 gigatonnes of CO2 each year, which amounts to 15% of human-induced greenhouse gas emissions according to the FAO. We therefore urgently need to find new sources of proteins that are more sustainable and environmentally friendly, for both human consumption and livestock feed.
What are the solutions to be implemented? How to make the most of our resources and provide tangible solutions based on the circular economy? What if insects turned out to be a promising resource?

Nowadays, we observe that 70% of farmland are used for livestock farming. Moreover, aquaculture requires large amounts of fish meal, which, in turn, is responsible for overfishing and the degradation of marine ecosystems.

In order to help ensure food safety for future generations and protect the environment, Veolia is developing  insect-based bioconversion: a solution that will transform organic by-products from food industry and agriculture refuse (either liquid or solid form) into proteins for animals feed via the production of insects.

Are insect farmers today’s new entrepreneurs? And will their insteaks – made from insects – soon replace the meat in our plates?

Natural recycling of nutrients

Harmless for human beings and non-invasive, the black soldier fly (Hermetia illucens) is an insect present across all continents. The interest of this insect lies in its voracious appetite, when in larva stages, for a wide variety of organic matter. It is a detritivore and a natural nutrient recycler. 1 kg of black soldier fly eggs produces 6 tonnes of larvae in the space of ten days, which, once fed on organic matter, will be a source of protein for animal feed.

Who are our customers? 

The food industry and farmers

Veolia solution

Placed in contact with organic by-products, larvae of black soldier flies feed on them and grow. When they have reached a sufficient size, they are washed, dehydrated, ground and processed into oil and protein powder.


Application to finished products: 

Insect proteins can be used to feed pets and farm animals, in particular fish, poultry and swine, as a substitute for fish meal. Beyond the protein product, frass, a bioconversion co-product, is an excellent organic fertiliser, which helps restore the organic matter in the soil and replaces chemical fertilisers.

Veolia is contributing to the production of new forms of animal proteins by upcycling 100% of organic by-products from the food industry and agriculture refuse, while generating zero waste.

Benefits for our customers

Maximizing the value of the organic by-products

Reducing complexity of by-product management and long term visibility

Closing the loop for a circular food chain

Veolia's strategy

In 2016 Veolia developed the insect-based bioconversion solution with two start-ups: Entofood and Mutatec.

As a major industrial player, Veolia has successfully industrialized its first bioconversion site in 2019 in Malaysia, and is currently building a second facility in France. With its international presence, the Group is able to replicate and adapt its expertise in the field in different geographical areas.

Entofood by Veolia


Entofood built its pilot farm in Malaysia to breed black soldier flies.

Since 2012, with the help, in particular, of Veolia, Entofood has been producing more than 7 billion black soldier fly eggs, 200 tons of larva biomass and helped recover 1,000 tons of organic waste.

Mutatec by Veolia


Set up in the Bouches-du-Rhône département, Mutatec develops farms to breed black soldier flies.

Founded in 2015, Mutatec uses black soldier flies and bio-waste to supply aquaculture and poultry feed.

Interested in Bioconversion? Contact us