How do we feed 9,7 million people by 2050?
During the next 30 years, the world’s population will increase by as many people as currently live in Europe and Africa combined, according to UN estimates.
With up to 2 billion more world citizens, we will encounter challenges that we can hardly imagine, also when it comes to access to food and feed. It requires us to explore new ideas already now.
In 15-20 years, humanity’s need for food production will have increased by an estimated 60-70% based on current growth and consumption patterns. At the same time, we know that almost all arable land in the world has already been cultivated.
Therefore, we have to use our current resources wiser and more efficiently. This of course involves further investment and development of today’s agriculture and aquaculture.
Additionally, we have to explore new and more sustainable ways of producing food and feed. This is where most of the growth should come from, with concern for the environment and sustainability.
If all people in the world were to live like Norwegians, we would reportedly need the resources of 2.5 Earths. What we eat, and how we potentially reuse organic waste, will probably have a major impact on our collective use of resources in the future.
Pronofa is a trailblazer for new and sustainable protein sources. We believe that Ciona has the potential to make a great contribution in terms of meeting the increased demand for food and feed, even in the near future. In a slightly longer perspective, we also hope that the conditions for breeding Black Soldier Flies will improve, thus making insect production a sustainable feed source alternative in Norway as well.
Actual Circular Economy
In Norway, up to a third of all produced food is discarded.
This means that a total of 450.000 tonnes of food is thrown away each year. The food waste is largely just burned at bio gas plants, but much of it could instead be reused by animals or organisms further down the food chain.
For instance as food for Black Soldier Fly larvae.
If we include biological waste from fisheries and aquaculture, we have an additional one million tonnes of organic waste which, by all accounts, could have been converted into a natural and nutritious substrate for larvae. More feed for production animals means more food for us people.
Free-range chickens happily eat insects when they move around in the farm yard. So does the salmon that wakes and jumps in the river.
It is only now that we can start talking seriously about creating actual circular economy. One gram of Black Soldier Fly eggs can turn into as much as 4 kg. of larvae in just two weeks, and all they have to eat is organic waste. The challenge is finding a cheap substrate that we are allowed to use, ideally a waste resource with a high nutritional value.
The larvae are primarily used as animal feed, but we can also extract chitin (and chitosan), as well as frass – an organic fertilizer with a favorable NPK composition suitable for several types of plants.
Real meat from the coast
Ciona is a marine tunicate animal . There are more than 3000 tunicate species in the World, and some are considered local delicacies in countries like South Korea, Chile and France.
However, Pronofa is the first in the world to commercially produce food from a tunicate species.
We use the species Ciona, which grows naturally in Norway and Sweden, and which has proven to have very good properties as a raw material.
Because Ciona is an animal, it contains animal protein. This is positive because the taste, consistency, applicability and nutritional content are all comparable to other meat products you will find in the fresh produce counter.
Another advantage is that Ciona has a quite neutral taste, so they go well with dinner dishes that are already popular today, where you add other flavors. It does not have a distinct «marine flavor», like fish or seafood. For our end-products, we can add spices or vegetables. We also make a delicious Purply fond from Ciona, which is perfect for sauces, soups, wok dishes and stews.