Soldier Fly Technologies, a subsidiary of Port Allen-based cricket seller Fluker Farms, announced today that its joint research project with the LSU Department of Entomology has been selected to receive $60,0000 from the LSU Student Sustainability Fund.
The grant will go directly to LSU Entomology to support the implementation of a food waste upcycling program on campus using black soldier fly (BSF) larvae.
LSU PhD candidate Devon Brits submitted the BSF project for consideration in 2018. The South African native has studied the insect for more than six years and currently works hand-in-hand with the Soldier Fly Technologies team to create the fly colony that will serve as the basis for the project’s implementation phase.
Known for their voracious appetites, BSF larvae are bred to consume mass amounts of discarded food, and through their natural bio-conversion process, used to create high-protein animal feed and rich plant fertilizer.
“The potential for this special insect to offer a natural, sustainable, zero-waste solution is remarkable,” explained Brits. “My hope is that in the not-so-distant future we can have a substantial impact on waste diversion across LSU and expanding throughout Baton Rouge.”
Soldier Fly Technologies owner David Fluker began investing in BSF research almost a decade ago, and his family of companies has enjoyed a long history of research collaboration with LSU.
“Our BSF project is in direct alignment with their Sustainability Strategic Plan,” said Fluker, “And its success will not only contribute to a more eco-friendly campus, but will help put both Fluker’s and LSU at the forefront of this important emerging technology.”
ABOUT SOLDIER FLY TECHNOLOGIES
Soldier Fly Technologies (SFT) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Fluker Farms, a local insect breeding facility and the nation’s leading producer of live crickets. The venture and its website, SoliderFly.com, are dedicated to exploring the potential of using the Black Soldier Fly (BSF) as both a food waste management solution and a sustainable protein source.
ABOUT THE LSU SUSTAINABILITY FUND
LSU’s Student Sustainability Fund was adopted by the student body in 2016 to foster the development and implementation of specific projects that increase environmental sustainability, biodiversity, and/or eco-friendly technologies on campus. It is collected as a $2 fee per student each semester. Proposals are submitted by LSU students, faculty, and staff to the Campus Committee on Sustainability for funding consideration.