The project aims to obtain value from the waste of the livestock supply chain (poultry manure) and from other organic sources of waste, by using insects to produce biomaterials that can be included in the agricultural productive cycle, enhancing the overall sustainability of the technological process.

A demonstration plant will be designed to mass rear the larvae of the black soldier fly (Hermetia illucens ). These will develop on a substrate of various organic waste material sourced from large local companies until they reach maturity. At this point, they will be stabilized and fractioned in their protein, lipid and chitin components.

Starting with this fractioning, with particular stress on the protein component, optimal mixtures will be identified to design and develop innovative bio-plastics with specific properties, to be used mainly for agricultural purposes (e.g. mulch sheets). In addition to their primary function, these bioplastics will act as slow release fertilizers, discharging nitrogen during decomposition.

The substrate remaining from larvae farming will be a high-quality compost that can be utilized as an organic fertilizer. Adding zeolitite will further improve the compost’s performance, while reducing any unpleasant emissions.

Exhaustive agronomic analysis will provide information on the use of these new products, and their eventual inclusion in the provisions of procedural and technical guidelines for specific crops.

The environmental and economic sustainability of the different project phases will be evaluated through careful LCA (Life Cycle Analysis) and LCC (Life Cycle Cost) analyses. The legal feasibility assessment of the processes described will clarify the legal issues connected with the use of organic waste, with the purpose of opening new industrial prospects.

Expected results: alternative use and sustainable enhancement of organic waste and poultry manure, development of innovative materials.

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