November 7, 2019


Uganda university breeds black soldier fly larvae as alternative livestock feed


The larvae only needs a small space, consumes less water and energy and consumes waste organic materials to grow, reported The Observer Uganda.


The Uganda Martyrs University (UMU) faculty of Agriculture is breeding black soldier fly (BSF) larvae provided by Bobo Eco Farm from Mityana as an alternative cheaper livestock feed.


Edward Ssebbombo, owner of Bobo Eco Farm, said BSF larvae will consume any organic waste such as fish offals, decaying jackfruit, fruit waste and dead chicks.


While he admits that using insects as an alternative feed is not a novel idea, BSF lives freely in the wild and he hopes the study will find the best way to breed and mass produce BSF as a viable alternative feed for livestock in the country.

He added that BSF is rich in fat and contains more proteins than soybeans and silver cyprinid (mukene), making it a suitable high value feed source for swine, poultry and fish.


Compost is also produced as a by-product of breeding BSF, which can be commercially sold to farmers as a bio-fertiliser.


Ssebbombo and the Bobo Eco Farm team have been training 30 UMU staff since April 2017 to breed and raise BSF, with SHS 939 million (~US$252,630; SHS 1 = US$ 0.00027) funding from the Uganda Education Ministry’s Skills Development Fund (through the Private Sector Foundation Uganda and funded by the World Bank).


Dr. Joseph Ssekandi, dean at the faculty of Agriculture at UMU said BSF poses no harm to the environment as it is not a vector or pest, adding that UMU will begin BSF production in the future. A BSF curriculum has been developed by UMU.


UMU currently produces four tonnes of feed as a training unit but will expand to nine tonnes with a milling plant and two breeding units. New incubation hubs related to BSF will be opened to explore new ways of using BSF larvae as end products.


BSF of the Hermetia illucens species lives for between five to 14 days, and is only found around manure or decaying waste.



- The Observer Uganda

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