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Black Soldier Fly As Poultry Feed

Chicken in the garden looking curious

Raising chickens can be rewarding, therapeutic, and surprisingly entertaining (the stories that you will have and be able to tell friends will be countless)! In addition to being great pets, chickens are also productive backyard friends who pay for their upkeep with delicious and healthy fresh eggs. 

Taking care of your chickens diet is extremely important. 

Protein is an essential macronutrient in a healthy diet and current commercial feeds derive it mainly from soybeans and fishmeal. We propose an alternative, or at least a replacement of some proteins in your chickens diet with black soldier fly derived protein. The quality of the protein as well as a very beneficial mineral content (high calcium, optimum calcium to phosphorus ratio), and not to mention environmental benefits, make BSF a great alternative choice.

Without further ado, jump right in to find out more about this healthy snack that your chickens will love to munch on. 

The Nutrients in BSFL

The black soldier fly larvae provide a wide range of macro and micro nutrients. Macronutrients are the fats, carbohydrates and protein whereas micronutrients are the different vitamins and minerals.


Protein is an essential component in your chickens diet. Just like in humans, it helps to build as well as restore and repair tissues. In chicken terms - this means healthier immune system, stronger feathers and better egg production (more eggs, larger eggs or both).

The protein content in BSFL ranges from 35%-45% of dried weight. But it’s not all about the quantity of protein. The amino acids lysine and methionine stand out in BSF derived protein and these amino acids are especially known for their positive impact on growth, molting support and better feed efficiency.


While you shouldn’t go overboard feeding fats to your chickens, some fat in their diet is necessary. What is particularly interesting is that BSF is known for its high lauric fatty acid content. Lauric acid has been shown to have natural antimicrobial effects. This is a very unique trait that BSF fats offer and in future may be part of the solution to limit the amount of antibiotics used in farming.


BSF provide a negligible amount of carbohydrates. But we are not saying your chickens should all go on keto and ditch the carbs. This is why if you are looking for a complete feed, you could buy whatever source of carbs your chickens prefer and top-up with the BSF for protein and some fats. BSF do provide a small amount of fibers however, ranging between 3-5% which may be beneficial to the gut flora aka microbiome. Strong gut flora with a healthy dose of good bacteria also means stronger immune system.

Calcium & Phosphorus

Calcium helps to provide the material needed to keep your chickens eggshells strong. 

Stronger eggshells are not just an aesthetic factor, you’d want your chickens to lay eggs with hard shells since such eggs are better able to keep the bacteria out. 

But it is equally important to have the right amount of Phosphorus. Phosphorus helps to metabolize or use the Calcium that the chickens eat. BSF have the perfect ratio of Phosphorus to Calcium in order to ensure optimal Calcium uptake.

How Much BSFL Is Appropriate for Your Chickens

The amount of BSFL to be fed to your chickens varies according to their age.

Baby chicks will need less BSF as treats. This is not inherent to BSF because the amount of protein needed in general at this stage is also lower. If you feed your chicks too much too soon, it may cause diarrhea and white poop. Once they outgrow this stage and especially when they start laying eggs, you should increase the amount of BSF treats. 

How Many Chickens Can One Black Soldier Fly Box Feed?

Here, we’ll assume that the box you’re purchasing is our 1.1lb Supreme Grubs 100% Non-GMO dried BSF larvae.

Dried black soldier fly larvae provides about 4500 kcal per kilogram, which means 2250 kcal for the 1.1lb box. 

An average laying hen needs about 300 kcal per day, and up to 15% of the feed can be replaced with BSF. 

After doing the math, this is the result. One 1.1lb box will last you almost two months - if you have only one chicken :) If you have 10 chickens, the grubs may be gone in 5 days. This means you’d be better off buying our 5.5lb box instead.


Be creative when discovering ways to improve your chicken feed and boost the nutritional value of your eggs. Using BSFL as a feed source will give you stronger chickens and reduce the money spent on antibiotics. 

Enjoy raising your healthy chickens and happy feeding! 

How Black Soldier Fly (Hermetia illucens) can Save the Seas

People protesting against the corporations damaging the environment

The BSF don’t just transform discarded organic matter into high-quality protein feed for fish, poultry, and other industries. The waste that BSF produce while doing so can also be put to use as a highly valuable organic fertilizer. This is what a real circular and sustainable ecosystem should look like. 

How does BSF farming save life in the oceans?

First and foremost, black soldier flies do not have a negative impact on the humans or the environment - they are harmless in the sense that they don’t sting, don’t spread diseases and also don’t pose risks to the local ecosystem. 

Apart from not harming the environment they make positive contributions in helping us combat some of the results of unsustainable food and feed growing practices. Here are some of the incredible ways through which BSF saves our oceans and the life inside them: 

(1) BSF supports sustainable agriculture

Soybeans have also been used as a feed source for poultry. Growing soybeans has led to severe deforestation along with the dangerous usage of high volumes of pesticides and herbicides which outflow into our waters. Deforestation also leads to less food for the fish since less zooplankton is present.

The good news is that BSF can be used as a substitute for commercial feed. The level of inclusion, or percentage of BSF that should be used in a feed depends on the species. Generally speaking, optimal inclusion percentage for poultry varies between 5-15%. Making the switch from soybean to BSF can help our precious water resources, minimize the use of pesticides and insecticides as well as put a halt to or limit deforestation. 

(2) BSF supports sustainable aquaculture

Commercial feed is produced using fishmeal, and this is one of the reasons why we see a sharp decline in fish population across all the oceans and seas. A large amount of fish caught is used to feed other fish and not humans! It is estimated that up to 80% of fish processed to be used as fish meal can actually be used directly for human consumption. It is absurd that we’re wasting so much resources to feed fish to the fish.

(3) BSF supports waste management

The waste-management problem is a global issue. Aside from unsightly landfills, there is a serious threat from poisonous gases that the waste produces, which can be equally dangerous for humans, environment, and ultimately waters since this is where the liquefied waste ends up.

Black soldier flies have the solution to these severe problems since the larvae of BSFL thrive on decaying matter. This means that they can break down all kinds of waste (including your kitchen waste) into nutritious food for other species. 

This conserves the environment and reduces pressure on exhausted landfills, which, as a result, helps to save the seas. 


Black soldier flies - no matter how small - have a huge potential impact on the conservation of our environment. 

These incredible insects are super-efficient at breaking down waste material into useful products such as protein-rich feeds. Whether you’re consuming them in your diet, feeding them to your pets, using them as industrial feed substitute, or using their organic fertilizer, by supporting the BSF economy, you will be helping to save the very endangered life in oceans and seas across the globe.

Why BSF Is Better Than Mealworms For Your Chicks

Thousands of fresh insect larvae or worms

We have so much variety of everything nowadays, and making the right or at least a good choice has never been more difficult. This holds true for goods destined for human but also animal consumption. With the variety of different options present for chicken feed and treats, choosing the right ones for your feathery friends is not that easy.

You need to do a good amount of research on the nutritional facts of the different types of feed and treats available and the requirements of your poultry before you can put together an optimal dietary plan for them. 

Speaking of insects, mealworms have long been known as a treat for chickens. The less well known are black soldier flies which have only recently gained momentum, for various good reasons. Both mealworms and BSF are a great source of protein but have a slightly different nutritional profile. 

In this article, we will do an objective comparison of mealworms and BSF and point out why BSF is a superior treat for your chickens, birds or ducks. So, without further ado, let’s get straight into it!

Where Did BSFL And Mealworms Originate?

Both BSFL and mealworms are commonly produced in China and Southeast Asia, owing to the area’s vast experience with producing insects and optimum temperature for the process. In places where they are commercially produced in the US, they are relatively more expensive.

You can raise your own BSFL and mealworms, of course, but that requires dedication and ample time - not everyone can fit it into their packed schedules. 

Production issues with BSFL and Mealworms

At times, both BSFL and Mealworms may be processed incorrectly using microwaves at overly high temperatures or with uneven temperature applied to the batch of larvae. This may result in a few or many larvae burned. Burning the larvae deprives it of certain nutritional benefits.

Next time you’re in the market to buy some worms, check their color and see if there too-many burned dried insects. Since mealworms are more hollow on the inside, they are more prone to getting burned and would thus end up providing even lower nutritional values.

BSFL Pose No Health Threats

If you wish to raise any one of mealworms or BSF - BSF is the safer option to go for.

Adult Black Soldier Flies do not have mouths (though they can drink water) and are not known to be transmitters of diseases.

Mealworms, on the other hand, can transmit dangerous diseases to your flock (and to you too!) such as the avian flu and E.coli. This is especially true for mealworms that feed on animal protein, as these animals may be diseased and the mealworms can easily pick up viruses and bacteria from the diseased animal.

Nutritional Facts

Although nutritional composition varies considerably depending on the diet of the larvae, an average estimate is as follows:

  • Protein:

Mealworms contain 50% protein while BSFL consist of 41% crude protein. Since your chicks are in the growing stage, this protein plays a role in the formation of new tissues, and in the structure and function of their bodies.

  • Fat:

Mealworms contain 25% fat, while BSFL contains 28%. For your growing chicks, this fat aids in optimal weight gain. This ensures they are nice and big, which is especially important if your chickens are intended to be broilers.

  • Fiber:

Mealworms contain less fibre than BSFL (they have 7% versus a good 10% in BSFL by dry weight). Chicks that feed on more fibre consume more food and hence gain more weight. 

  • Calcium:

BSFL contains 2% calcium by dry weight compared to negligible amounts in mealworms (there’s almost 85x more calcium in BSFL than mealworms). Calcium strengthens your chicks bones and contributes to stronger eggshells when they start laying.


Cute, little chicks running and clucking around in your backyard can really warm up your heart. But remember: it is their feed that keeps them going! 

It is essential for you to choose a versatile, nutritious diet that boosts their growth and aids their survival.

Black Soldier Fly Larvae and Mealworms are two of the many options that you can incorporate into your chicks’ feed.

However, a thorough research is a good idea before you choose any of them. And if you read up on their nutrition facts, as well as other aspects of their production (as mentioned in this blog), you will learn that BSFL are actually better, cleaner and sometimes even a cheaper option than mealworms for your chicks.