Li Yanrong’s farm in China’s Zhangqiu District cultivating millions of cockroaches as a novel way to dispose of kitchen waste.
Over 1 billion of cockroaches, bred at Li’s farm, are reportedly consuming some 50 tonnes of kitchen waste every day.
The owner of the cockroach farm said that the new waste disposal method was introduced “because presently waste cannot be disposed of. The kitchen waste disposal is a global problem. Many scientists and experts have thought of a lot of ways, but the problem has not been solved.”
According to Li, the new waste disposal system is environmentally harmless – it does not affect the ecosystem and ensures “no human intervention,” while “following natural laws of the food chain.” Li went on to say that his waste disposal system is also an environmentally-friendly option to fermentation, noting that “it is very thorough and clean.”
Farm-bred cockroaches can reportedly eat crushed kitchen waste, digesting its toxins with the help of the enzyme secreted by their bodies and leaving only such harmless elements as iron and zinc. Cockroach corpses are then ground into powder, which can also be used as livestock feed or as a medicinal herb.
The new waste disposal method has drawn some criticism, with some expressing concern that cockroaches may escape from the farm.
To address this issue, an escape prevention system has been set up, including a ditch and a concrete structure built around the cockroach farm.