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Professor Bartha Maria Knoppers stepped down from the Canada Research Chair in Law and Medicine at McGill University in April 2024, a post she held for more than 20 years. Professor Knoppers consistently prioritized “humanity” in her academic work and in policymaking. As such, she forged a strong intellectual legacy, notably through her work on the human right to science, genomic and health-related data sharing, genome editing, human reproductive technologies, stem cell research, the rights of children, and population health. This collection of essays honours her extraordinary academic contributions to law, policy, and medicine.
In 2017, a book was published entitled ‘Insects as food and feed: from production to consumption’ (Van Huis and Tomberlin, 2017). However, the sector of insects as food and feed is developing so quickly that an update seems appropriate. This book ‘Advancement of insects as food and feed in a circular economyy’ is a reprint of the Special Isse in Open Access in the Journal of Insects as Food and Feed. All chapters dealt with relevant topics related to insects as food and feed, and most of the content of the articles is different from the 2017 book, reflecting developments in the field.
Universal Model of Water Resources Management
The conservation of water resources together with environment protection will be a challenge for the European Union within the 21st century. Water management nowadays involves the cooperation of farmers, societies, industry and public administration. The solution based model of water protection in this book describes the creation of local water partnerships by local actors and stakeholders for the management of local water resources. These local water partnerships will enable the integration of the local community to comprehensively solve problems related to water security, while also cooperating with neighbouring partnerships. The local water strategy is based on local needs and priorities with reference to regional, national and global objectives. This strategy also provides for environment and species protection, as envisioned by the New Green Deal and the current EU actions to make the key economic sectors more resistant to climate change. The model for water protection can also be used to reduce the carbon footprint and environmental transformation within Europe.

Abstract

Thermal tolerance and preference are traits commonly considered when mass-producing farmed animals as temperature impacts production. In this study, the impact of age and calorific restriction of immature black soldier fly, Hermetia illucens (L.) (Diptera: Stratiomyidae) on associated thermal tolerance and preference was examined. Both age (7-d-old for young larvae and 14-d-old for old larvae) and calorific restriction (led to size differentiation, small for calorific restriction and large for non-restriction) within a given stage influenced thermal tolerance (i.e. KR50) and thermal preference. Results indicate the interaction between age and calorific restriction was significant on both larval and prepupal thermal tolerance but not thermal preference. Median heat tolerance KR50 ranged from 46.4 °C (large, old prepupae) to 48.4 °C (large, young larvae). Median cold tolerance KR50 ranged from 21.6 °C (small, young larvae) to 32.1 °C (small, old larvae). Young larvae preferred median temperatures ∼3.0 °C greater than old larvae. Large larvae preferred median temperatures ∼2.0 °C lower than small larvae. Results from this study indicate ontogeny (i.e. stage of development) and calorific restriction have significant impacts on black soldier fly thermal tolerance and preference. Precise regulation of temperature in an industrial setting is necessary for optimal batch production of the black soldier fly (e.g. survival) and for colony maintenance (e.g. prepupae producing adults and potentially eggs). The same can be said with regards to maintaining consistent age and calorific restriction of immatures produced within each batch as variation in such traits impacts thermal tolerance and preference (e.g. survival to harvest for producing protein or adults for colony) as well. The methods and temperatures used in this study could serve as a foundation for developing standard operating procedures for regulating temperatures experienced by black soldier fly larvae industrially produced.

In: Journal of Insects as Food and Feed

Abstract

Entotechnology integrates scientific and technical knowledge to leverage the potential of insects for societal benefit, encompassing fields such as medicine, agriculture, food, and biotechnology. This article aims to assess and promote the potential of Costa Rica to develop entotechnology from an ecosystem and entomophagy perspective, including an updated list of edible insect species in the region. Costa Rica boasts a biodiversity of 48 edible insect species. To date, two notable projects by the Universidad de Costa Rica have been successfully implemented. However, the current legislation in Costa Rica needs to provide better conditions to foster industrial insect farming within a circular economy. Universities play a crucial role in encouraging the formalization and appreciation of insect rearing, entomophagy, and entotechnology studies. Prioritizing the exploration of new uses for edible insect species is essential for the advancement of this field.

In: Journal of Insects as Food and Feed
The Series of Insects as Food and Feed (SIFF) is an international book series, that publishes peer-reviewed research in the field of insects as food and feed based on its originality, importance, interdisciplinary interest, timeliness, accessibility, and interesting conclusions. SIFF also provides authoritative, insightful, and arresting interpretation of relevant topical and coming trends affecting scientists, the insect industry and the wider public.

Abstract

As consumer and manufacturer interests in edible insects and processed food with added insects are increasing, new possibilities for detecting edible insect proteins in processed foods have become increasingly important. In the present study, a proteomic strategy was applied to identify insect proteins and thermostable house cricket-specific (Acheta domesticus) peptide markers. To determine the limit of detection (LOD) for house cricket proteins, cooked meatballs containing house cricket protein powder (CP) as a partial pork substitute were investigated. The final concentration of CP ranged from 0.8% to 7.6%. The LODs for tropomyosin 1 and translational elongation factor-2 were 0.8% (w/w), whereas for apolipophorin-III it was 2.5% (w/w). Eight heat-resistant peptides unique to the family Grillidae (true crickets) and four peptides unique to the Acheta domesticus were identified. The results suggest that selected cricket-specific and processing-resistant peptide markers have potential utility in the authentication of the cricket formulations used in meat products. However, this has to be confirmed on different heavily processed meat products.

In: Journal of Insects as Food and Feed

Abstract

After receiving a positive safety assessment as a novel food by the European Food Safety Authority, Acheta domesticus (house cricket) was extensively studied due to its recognised high nutritional value. However, the nutritional quality of crickets depends on several factors related to the insect itself (e.g. metamorphic stage, gender, habitat, and diet) or processing (e.g. killing methods). These variables also influence the isolation of the insect’s main components: proteins, lipids, and chitin. Notably, chitin purification is particularly challenging in insects. This study aimed to evaluate the influence of two killing methods (blanching and freezing) and five developmental stages (hatching, three nymphs, and adult) on the nutritional composition of crickets. The impact of these factors was also assessed in terms of chitin purification. Different macronutrients were found to be maximised at different developmental stages, suggesting that the stage can be selected based on the target nutritional value. Chitin with a higher purity was obtained from 28-day crickets because of the lowest percentage of protein bound to chitin. In the chitin samples of the crickets in the middle stages killed by blanching, the proteins bound to chitin were lower than in the freezing one, possibly due to lower activation of the melanisation and sclerotization pathways. In addition, these residual proteins had a defined amino acid composition, suggesting the presence of cuticular proteins capable of binding chitin.

In: Journal of Insects as Food and Feed

Abstract

Desirable conditions for foaming, drying kinetics, and characteristics of black soldier fly larvae (BSFL) powders were studied. Pre-pupal BSFL was fractionated under wet conditions. A pasty liquid, free of fibrous material, was used and adjusted to a moisture content suitable (88%) for foaming. The influence of emustab ( X 1 : 1-2 g/100 g), maltodextrin ( X 2 : 3-5 g/100 g), and whipping time ( X 3 : 9-15 min) on the BSFL foam properties were analysed according to a central composite design (23) with added axials. Optimal conditions for foam preparation ( X 1 : 1.5 g/100 g, X 2 : 4 g/100 g, and X 3 : 15 min) revealed excellent foam properties (density: 409.69 kg/m3, stability: 72.49%, porosity: 60.51%, and overrun: 153.64%). For the drying process, foamed (optimum conditions) and liquid (no additives) samples were compared at different temperatures (40, 60, and 80 °C) to determine the drying kinetics and powder quality. For kinetic modelling, five mathematical expressions were fitted to the experimental data. The Newton, Henderson & Pabis, Page, Logarithmic, and Midilli models were adequate ( R 2 > 0.95 ) to represent the drying kinetics of the BSFL foams and liquids. However, the mathematical models that best described the kinetic curves were those proposed by Midilli and Page ( R 2 > 0.99 and RMSE < 0.03 ). In addition, foam dried at 60 °C exhibited excellent powder quality characteristics. Thus, this study provides new alternatives to process protein-rich food and feed (above 54.82%) in short periods with positive economic, social, and environmental impacts.

In: Journal of Insects as Food and Feed

Abstract

Black soldier fly larvae (Hermetia illucens L.) are proficient decomposers of organic matter. We compared experiments with local substrates containing: domestic residues (DR), and brewery wastes (BW) in pure form, or mixed with in two different proportions (BW70 or BW30), and two sequential diets in which larvae were fed first DR and then BW (DR/BW) or vice versa (BW/DR). The effects of the diets on life cycle parameters for mass production of H. illucens larvae were evaluated using general linear mixed models, ANOVA and Kruskal-Wallis. The pure DR diet significantly prolonged the developmental period (47.8 days), although the pupal stage was shorter in larvae fed on this diet (13.8 days). Larval survival was similar between treatments (over 85%), but pupal survival tended to be higher in the mixed diets (over 96%). Larval weights differed significantly between treatments, with mixed diets promoting greater weight gains than pure and sequential diets. Larvae fed a DR/BW diet gained more weight than those fed a BW/DR diet. The highest mean larval weights (0.23 g) were observed in the mixed diet BW70, followed by the sequential diet DR/BW (0.22 g). Mixed diet BW70 also resulted in larger wings and bodies in both sexes. Sequential diet BW/DR and pure diet DR resulted in the smallest adult sizes. Sex ratios varied, favouring male emergence (1.8 M:0.2 F) in pure diet DR and in both sequential mixed diets (1.7 M:0.3 F and 1.3 M:0.7 F, respectively). This study highlights the importance of higher total protein plus carbohydrate concentrations in diets for optimal larval rearing, favouring mixed diets BW70. Carbohydrate-rich substrates should be provided earlier in the cycle to benefit larval and adult performance. Locally available waste vegetable or fruit peels, brewery waste, and spent yerba mate proved to be viable substrates for larval rearing, providing economic and environmental benefits for H. illucens rearing.

In: Journal of Insects as Food and Feed