Founded in 2008, AgriProtein is the world's leading pioneer in the nutrient recycling industry, making the 'Top 50 Genius Company' list of Time magazine. The British firm already has a larval plant in South Africa, where it will soon build a second one. With the acquisition of Millibeter, it kicks off its conquest of the European market. Earlier in 2018, the firm invested USD 105 million to expand into Africa, the US, Asia and the Middle East.
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AgriProtein (UK) acquires insect firm Millibeter
The protein found in the larvae of the black soldier fly is ideal as a food ingredient for chickens, pigs and fish such as trout and salmon. Moreover, skincare company Mylène has tested it for use in hand creams, and the chitin in the larval exoskeleton has chemical applications in coatings and for the removal of heavy metals in water purification plants.
AgriProtein is investing EUR 15 million in its first large larval factory in Belgium, which could be followed by one or two additional plants in the future. Every day, the factory will produce 200 million larvae, which process 50,000 tons of food waste per year. The larvae will produce 3,000 tons of protein and 1,500 tons of fat annually. Additionally, AgriProtein is planning to set up a local research center in Flanders.
"What we do is the future of pet food,” says Johan Jacobs, founder of Millibeter. Six years ago, he established Millibeter in Antwerp and built a small pilot installation in a hall in Aartselaar. With the takeover by AgriProtein and subsequent capital increase, the firm’s innovation opportunities and impact will grow substantially.
With Dutch as its official language, Flanders (Dutch: Vlaanderen) is the northern region of Belgium. The capital of both Belgium and Flanders is Brussels.