Black Soldier Fly Larval Meal in Feed Enhances Growth Performance, Carcass Yield and Meat Quality of Finishing Pigs

S.Y. Chia, C.M. Tanga, I.M. Osuga, A.O. Alaru, D.M. Mwangi, M. Githinji, T. Dubois, S. Ekesi, J.J.A. van Loon, M. Dicke*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Using black soldier fly (BSF, Hermetia illucens) larvae as a novel protein source substituting fishmeal (FM) in animal feeds is globally gaining momentum. BSF can be reared on agro-industrial residues. However, incorporating BSF larval meal (BSFLM) into finisher pig diets has received inadequate attention. This study evaluated the effects of replacing dietary FM with BSFLM on growth, carcass traits and meat quality of finisher pigs. A control diet (including FM: 0% BSFLM) was compared with four dietary levels of replacement of FM with BSFLM at 25, 50, 75 or 100%. Forty hybrid pigs (crossbreeds of purebred Large White and Landrace) were randomly allocated to the five different dietary treatments. Feed intake, body weight gain and feed conversion ratio were measured. After 98 days of feeding, all pigs were slaughtered for the evaluation of carcass and nutritional content of the organ and muscle tissues. Diet significantly affected pig growth performance. Carcass weight of pigs fed diets with BSFLM replacing FM by 50, 75 or 100% (w/w) was higher than for pigs fed control diet with 100% FM as protein source. Crude protein content of pork tissues was high (65-93% on dry-matter basis) across all dietary groups. Therefore, BSFLM can replace FM in pig feed. This is relevant for commercial pig feed production and provides for the first time a nutritional analysis of pork derived from pigs raised on BSFLM.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)433-447
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Insects as Food and Feed
Issue number4
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 11 Mar 2021


  • carcass quality
  • crude protein
  • finisher pig diet
  • insect larval meal
  • market weight


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