Tyson Foods, the world’s second-largest processor and marketer of meat, and Protix, the world’s largest insect factory, have entered a joint venture to explore the potential of insect protein and lipid production.
This move is intended to target the pet food, aquaculture, and livestock industries. While there is speculation that this could be a step towards sustainability, it still remains uncertain if these alternative proteins will hold up to expectations.
The joint venture plans to create an insect protein processing facility in the continental United States that uses animal waste to feed black soldier flies; however, these flies are not slated for human consumption at this time.
According to Tyson Foods’ press release on the matter, “the strategic investment will support the growth of the emerging insect ingredient industry and expand the use of insect ingredient solutions to create more efficient sustainable proteins and lipids for use in the global food system.”
The goal is to produce high-quality proteins and lipids from byproducts of food manufacturing which can then be used across multiple industries.
John R. Tyson, the Chief Financial Officer of Tyson Foods, and Kees Aarts, CEO of Protix, have lauded this venture.
“Our partnership with Protix represents the latest strategic investment by Tyson Foods in groundbreaking solutions that drive added value to Tyson Foods’ business,” said John R. Tyson. “The insect lifecycle provides the opportunity for full circularity within our value chain, strengthening our commitment to building a more sustainable food system for the future.”
“We are very excited to announce the next step in our international growth strategy. Tyson Foods’ and Protix’s strategic partnership advances our joint work towards creating high-quality, more sustainable protein using innovative technology and solutions,” said Kees Aarts. “Moreover, we can immediately use their existing byproducts as feedstock for our insects. This agreement is a major milestone for Protix and significantly accelerates our ambition to grow through international partnerships.”