Otago Locusts is New Zealand’s first and only food-grade insect farm. It sells sustainably-farmed locusts as food for human consumption.
The Food and Agriculture Organization has said that within the next 30 years we will run out of space for traditional agriculture and that we need to find new sources of protein that are more sustainable, such as insects.
Locusts are at least five times more efficient at converting grass into protein compared to beef. They produce a fraction of the greenhouse gases and consume less than 10ml of water per kg produced, making them a viable alternative for the future of food. They take only one month to grow from an egg to a full-sized adult.
Otago Locusts produces between 500 and 1000 market-ready locusts per week. Over the last year it has gained the custom of a number of restaurants nationwide. It has also started making locust flour, which it sees as one of its main future products. It is in a good position to scale production and start a new export industry for New Zealand.
Otago Locusts is a finalist in the Transforming Food category of the 2017 NZI Sustainable Business Network Awards.