ValuSect - Valuable Insects

Insects in a frying pan

Transnational cooperation to strengthen the development of insect-based food products

26/09/2019 – 25/06/2023

Total budget of €4.02 m, €2.41m from Interreg North-West Europe

Interreg North-West Europe VALUSECT (European Regional Development Fund)

Project details

With an increasing global population, expected to reach 9 billion by 2050, sustainable alternatives for food resources are urgently needed. Increased consumption of insects in densely populated areas currently characterized by intensive agriculture such as the NWE Area is a potential way forward. As part of Interreg North-West Europe, the ValuSect consortium aims to strengthen the transnational cooperation and exploitation of research on insects as resources for the development of (semi) finished food products. From April 2021 the project also addresses increased involvement of insects in the feed sector. Three insect species (e.g. Tenebrio molitor, Acheta domesticus and Locusta migratoria) that already have a novel food dossier will be used in this project.

Although commonplace in many parts of the world, It is estimated that only ~30% of EU consumers are willing to eat insect-based food, a practice also known as entomophagy. The ValuSect consortium aims to expand the trade in insects as food in Western countries away from niche markets and towards the mainstream food sector by enhancing perception of the quality of insect production and processing.

The project will undertake research into the emission of greenhouse gasses, on the impact of the substrate, on food safety and on the shelf life of the food product. To support enterprise development the project will develop a trans-national Accelerator Programme for insect-based food products and operate a voucher scheme to enable knowledge transfer between academic partners and SMEs active in the insect supply chain.

More information about ValuSect

Lead Partner:

Thomas More Kempen vwz (Belgium)

Project partners:

Inagro vzw (Belgium)
Aberystwyth University (The United Kingdom)
Zürcher Fachhochschule (Switzerland)
Stichting Fontys (The Netherlands)
Boerenbondvereniging voor projecten vzw (Belgium)
Teagasc the Agriculture and Food Development Authority in Ireland (Ireland)
New Generation Nutrition Pro-Active (The Netherlands)
AliénorEU (Belgium)
BIC Innovation Limited (The United Kingdom)
Deutsche Gesellschaft für Züchtungskunde e.V.(Germany)

Associated partners

Flanders Food, BIIF, Greenport Westholland, Eurasanté, Pole Valorial, and Bio Treat Center, Food Processing and the Welsh Government.

Aberystwyth contacts:

Alison Kingston-Smith 

Joe Gallagher 

John Draper 

Manfred Beckman 

Martin Swain 

Logos of the partners in the project