THE STORY OF THE FLY: AND HOW IT COULD SAVE THE WORLD
Original authors — Jason Drew, Justine Joseph
Okay, let’s take a moment here to first get you mentally well-prepared.
I would like to minimise the possibilities of any yelling incidence while you are reading this at home. So, here’s some disclaimer before the read:
In this article that you are about to venture now, is not something mainstream, definitely not something commonly loved or celebrated for its existence. What it usually gives, is the “YUCK FACTOR”.
Believe me when I say this, the feeling is unanimous for most people, including myself for the past decades.
Here, we will be discussing about one of the most notorious creature that a vast majority of population hate it – flies.
No, I get it.
Who would love flies anyway if you know that each of them carry more than 1.9 million of bacteria around?
It spread diseases. Fly is our enemy.
Humanity or flies, choose one. We must eradicate them.
But something has changed, and something has to change.
With all that happening in the background, plus what I’m busy researching on right now, my view on flies has changed.
In order to prolong humanity terms in future, we must now learn to start seeing flies as our number one best friend. Let bygones be bygones.
Want to know why? Let the story begins.
Hello dear flies, I am here to make a pact with you.
Booming populations, exponential growth in birth rates, we are not seeing any significant momentum of slowing down in the near future.
With so much more mouth to feed every day, industrial animal farming is not sustainable. Every day, we are putting in large amount of energy and protein, but only getting very little protein output.
Take for example, fish farming. You need more than 2 kg of fish to produce 1 kg of fish. On top of that only 30% of that is consumed by humans, while a bulk amount of the produced are waste.
You do not need to be a number expert to do the math.
We have officially broke the food supply chain and security equation. We humans have eaten from the top to the very bottom of the marine food chain. The vast oceans are not capable to provide us with unlimited protein sources that we all crave for.
Poultry and land-based livestocks also have their own problems in the game.
Do you know in order to cope up with the world’s demand for chicken, how much growth boosters, antibiotics were deployed regularly? Also, plant-based soya protein itself is incomplete of certain vital amino acids in protein mix. Meaning, animal-based protein source will need to be included as the chicken feeds.
Do you know how much water is needed to produce one kilograms of beef? How much greenhouse gases is produced, how much areas of lands are now used for animal feed plantation?
Before we know it, we are soon in the lack of space to support the current food production ecosystem.
We are all about to face the protein crunch.
Simply put, we are in desperate need for a new hero: a fix for the broken equation, the right cog to complete the eternity machine, a mediator source that serves the role of providing sufficient protein for the animals and humans.
If we don’t solve it in time. – the ‘Golden Hours’, the history marathon of humanity is at brink.
This is where our superhero comes into play – FLY !
It is an indubitable fact that insect farming is the new upcoming popular trend. It is one of the top brilliant ideas to fix the mess we created.
Larvae, are protein powerhouse.
Studies have demonstrated insects generally have high amount of protein contents.
Some, well, even have bioactive functional peptides, which are good for your bodies.
Also, they are not so picky when it comes to food, as compared to us humans or even animals.
Garbage, excrement, rotting and decaying meat, slaughterhouse waste, brewer grain waste, you name it, there will always be flies to lick off the plate for you.
This makes them the perfect candidate to solve food waste problems.
Nutrient recycling – transforming organic waste into edible natural protein source. This is exactly what’s missing in our process.
Some simple yet neglected. It was always there from the beginning.
Nature has the fix for the problems we made. In this case, fly.
Saving the world while they are living the best of their lives.
In fact, fly has been so much more useful to human history, more than a common man like us would have heard about it.
Do you know that fruit flies were one of the early organisms that were sent to space as ‘lab rats’ – to test for potential space radiation damage, before NASA decide to send any astronauts to infinity and beyond.
If you are a CSI fan, you will be familiar with forensic entomology.
Blowflies, are capable of smelling death from 16 kilometres away.
The faunal development process, larval-growth conditions, coupled with other evidence together, can helps to solve the mystery of crime.
Meanwhile, on the science and engineering perspective, fly is profound in aerodynamic studies. It provides such immense bio-inspiration for contribution in flight instrument inventions.
Nature always gets it right, event our best inventions have to keep up.
Fly plays also an important role in medicine – all the way from the past, to present, and looking towards the future.
Larvae were used to disinfect soldier’s wounds and accelerate the healing process. Maggot inhalation therapy was a thing where patients sat around enclosed shed for treatment of pneumonia.
Hospitals are now seeing growing adoption of Maggot Debridement Therapy (MDT) – where it destroys only the dead tissues, leaving you beautiful, healthy pink tissue. MDT provides optimistic rate of salvaging your limbs for not being amputated. Chemicals secreted from the fly larvae (e.g. allantoin, urea) also helps to stimulate skin healing and repair.
Exoskeleton of the insect, chitin, for instance, has now been widely studied across different countries for their potential in biotechnology development and medicinal uses.
There are just so much more about flies that simply shout at you, hey, you shouldn’t just hate all of them.
Saving the world, we need humans to execute this plan, and we need most importantly, our hero – FLY.
The Insect Technology Group, one of the world’s leader in food valorisation, nutrient up-cycling, insect proteins development, while this is written, is currently working on full steam ahead to save the world.
Of course, with their partners of all time, Black Soldier Fly.
Every hero needs a sidekick. Fly is the hero of this tale.
The question is, are you ready to join the battle?
To end off, I would like to borrow this sentence from the author, Group CEO of Insect Technology Group – Jason Drew famous quote:
“Let’s get busy repairing the future.”
I have tidied up my personal mind-map after a good read on the book.
I highly recommend everyone who is exploring future upcoming opportunities on fly or insect farming, to grab a copy and have a fun time learning about our hero.
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