Manna Insect

How long does it take to get started growing BSF?

FAQ: How long does it take to get started growing BSF?

The length of the black soldier fly (BSF) larvae growth cycle is 8-15 days in one of our 20ft rearing units. The cycle time is the time between loading the unit with organic waste and 5dols (meaning baby larvae that has been nursed from eggs for 5 days), and unloading the full grown larvae and frass after all the organic waste loaded in the unit has been eaten. The actual working hours you need to put in per one rearing cycle can be as low as approximately 6 hours!

To start the operations you will first be provided either a list of materials (BOM) and instructions to build the growing unit, or a few links to potential manufacturers who can build the container for you. This usually takes 2-4 weeks. We will send you the IoT box, “Manna MIND 20ft”, that will control the container all the way to optimize the growth conditions no matter what the weather is outside (-30 – +40 *C). Once set in properly, the growth process will be fully automated. No need for building factories, no running water or plumbing, or even electricity (if used with solar system).

Then you will need to gather or source the biowaste/food (e.g. potatoes, old vegetables, manure) that you’re going to feed to the larvae, and we will provide you with the 5 dols, or point you to the place where you can purchase eggs or 5 dols. We will also provide you a recipe for starting the trials / testing. Before loading big batches it’s advisable to do test runs with smaller batches to find the optimal recipe (amount of bio waste per one insect tray and amount of 5 dols on each tray) and the cycle time (how many day is required for the larvae to consume all the waste). In the end of the rearing cycle, there should be only full-grown larvae and dry frass left in the growing boxes / insect trays.

After loading a batch of organic waste and baby larvae in the container, it’s more or less a waiting game. MIND will alert you if there are any actions you need to take during the growth period (like power cuts or other errors), and it automatically monitors and controls the conditions inside the container to optimize larvae growth.

Input: 5 dols equivalent of c. 140 grams of BSF eggs and roughly 4 tons of biowaste
Output: c. 700 kg larvae and 300 kg frass
Cycle time: 8-12 days
Work hours: from 6 h for loading and unloading

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