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The insect farmers turning to AI to help lower costs

The insect farmers turning to AI to help lower costs
2 Mayıs 2024 02:05
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Founded in 2019, Full Circle now employs 14 people, and supplies 49 farms across Thailand. It wants to increase this, but faces a hurdle – soybean-based feed is currently substantially cheaper.

Soybean feed is presently around 460 euros ($490; £400) per tonne, compared with €1,400 for insect-based, according to one European comparison earlier this year., external

To try to reduce the price of its feed, Full Circle is now turning to AI to help maximise production at a lower cost. To do this it is training an AI system to study all available past and present data on insect farming to determine and then continuously fine tune the best methods.

This can include everything from temperature to food quantity, the optimum space that the larvae need, quickly and accurately counting thousands of flies, and whether to introduce new strains or species.

“AI can help us speed up the process of trial and error, helping us overcome obstacles, and develop a thorough enough understanding of insect production, to be reasonably confident that our production is optimised,” says Mr Collins.

“AI can help us process, record and understand every attempt at insect farming to date, and expand the potential for a larger and more nutritious crop every time we grow one.”

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