Cockroaches are seen as pests but a guy named Li Yanrong has found an excellent use for them. His farm is located in Zhangqiu district in Jinan, China, where he holds 300m American cockroaches which eat up to 15 metric tons of wasted food every day. To put this into perspective the roaches eat up to a quarter of the district’s kitchen scrap.
‘These cockroaches are not afraid of anything soft, hard, sour, sweet, bitter, or spicy,’ Li was quoted as saying.
China generates a staggering number of 60m metric tons of kitchen waste every single year, which is disposed by the method of fermentation. The method of fermentation is expensive, inefficient and is a major contributor to the environmental pollution.
According to Li, these cockroaches offer an alternative to the method of fermentation which is inexpensive, efficient and safe for the environment.
He currently has 300 metric tons of cockroaches, but plans on increasing that number to 4,000 metric tons which will be enough to dispose 200 metric ton of waste every day from Zhangqiu and its neighboring cities.
The American cockroach specie is the largest of its neighboring species, its body is usually 4 times larger and a life cycle of approximately 700 days. It is used mainly for medicinal purposes in China.
The demand has increased tenfold these past yeas in China, and this demand inspired growth in this sector.
Xichang, southwestern Sichuan province alone breads six million adult cockroaches every single year just to meet the medicinal demand.
Nearly 28K adult cockroaches per square foot are produced in Xichang annually, according to the district’s report which was submitted to Beijing in the start of 2018.
Control in pollution seems to be China’s priority at this moment. It is even seen as the future leader in climate control sector of the world as the United States withdrew from the Paris Accord.