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SUStainable INsect CHAIN

Project description

Bugs help debug food insecurity issues

An increase in population growth will affect both the supply and demand for human food. A major concern is protein supply and finding suitable substitutes for animal protein. Studies have shown that edible insects can provide the human population with high-quality protein, amino acids and vitamins. Though insects and insect-derived products have entered the European market since first being acknowledged as a valuable protein source for animal feed and human food production the last decade, their commercialisation remains low. The EU-funded SUSINCHAIN project aims to increase the economic viability of the insect market by overcoming existing obstacles to scaling up the insect value chain in the EU. It will test and validate recently emerged technologies and processes aiming at a sustainable EU insect industry producing safe insect products or products from insect-fed animals which are appreciated by consumers.


The expected global population growth to 9.1 billion people in 2050 and the significant change of global dietary patterns require increasing world-wide food production by about 60%. The protein supply for feed and food is most critical, and requires a transition in protein sources. Edible insects can upgrade low-grade side streams of food production into high-quality protein, amino acids and vitamins in a very efficient way. Insects are thus considered to be the “missing link” in the food system of a circular and sustainable economy. Insects and insect-derived products have entered the European market since first being acknowledged as a valuable protein source for feed and food production at around 2010. However, scaling up the insect value chain in Europe is progressing at a relative slow pace. The aim of this project is to contribute to novel protein provision for feed and food in Europe by overcoming the remaining barriers for increasing the economic viability of the insect value chain and opening markets by combining forces in a comprehensive multi-actor consortium. The overall project objective is to test, pilot and demonstrate recently developed technologies, products and processes, to realise a shift up to Technology Readiness Level 6 or higher. The project focuses on these crucial activities, as well as living labs and workshops with stakeholders in the insect protein supply chain for feed and food. These actions provide the necessary knowledge and data for actors in the insect value chain to decrease the cost price of insect products, process insects more efficiently and market insect protein applications in animal feed and regular human diets that are safe and sustainable. This will pave the way for further upscaling and commercialisation of the European insect sector, resulting in a replacement of animal protein by insect protein of 10% in animal feed and of 20% in human diets, and a thousand fold increase in both production volumes and jobs in 2025.

Call for proposal


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Net EU contribution
€ 1 653 005,00
6708 PB Wageningen

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Oost-Nederland Gelderland Veluwe
Activity type
Research Organisations
Total cost
€ 1 653 005,00

Participants (35)