ProtERA Farms

A new protein for a new era

At ProtERA, our mission is to introduce insect farming in order to ensure food security in Africa.

Use Case

According to the FAO, 2 Billion people already eat insects. Insects take part in the diet of all African countries. In the region of Sikasso, in Mali, rural inhabitants collect and eat shea caterpillars in a seasonal fashion. ProtERA aims to introduce insect breeding in order to supply insects year round, therefore making good nutrition more accessible to rural people. ProtERA intends to aggregate the collectors to a network that will centralize their products and allow them to obtain better prices. Lastly, by training them to breed caterpillars year round for domestic consumption and sale, ProtERA offers a sustainable opportunity for an additional, consistent and eco-friendly stream of nutrition and income.

Potential

Rich in protein and essential micronutrients, insects offer complete nutrition. Insects use very little resources and emit little greenhouse gases to offer up to three times more protein than meat. Approved by the FAO, insects are an effective and environmentally responsible source of sustenance. ProtERA would train farmers to ensure access to edible insects throughout the year, providing a complete source of nutrition and income for African farmers. With the edible insect market estimated at $68 million in Africa, ProtERA offers an opportunity for empowerment, nutrition, development, and higher standard of living where it is needed most. By its innovative approach and impact, insect breeding for food is the agro-food innovation of the 21 century.

Business Case

Demand for food will double by 2050 while agriculture is extremely resource intensive as of today in terms of water, land, space, chemicals and greenhouse gas emissions. It is urgent to find alternative sources of food that can meet this growing demand while preserving the environment. We will establish a pilot caterpillar farm in Mali that will breed and sell to the local market. We will also use it as a base to teach caterpillar farming to locals. Insects use drastically less water, land and feed to offer up to 3 times more protein than meat. Contrarily to meat and crops, they emit very little greenhouse gases. We therefore facilitate the production of environmentally sustainable food, prevent the environmental impact of agricultural production and enable higher income for rural people.

Objectives:

  1. Food security: accessible, affordable and sustainable food for all segments of society.
  2. Environmental preservation: prevention from the environmental impact of agricultural production.
  3. Higher income: from the sales of insects of the market and therefore potentially attenuating urban migration.

Team Protera

Montreal, Canada

Our Team

Our Mission

Disruptive food innovation has the power to effectively solve the pressing food security challenge of the 21st century. With a growing population, environmental degradation and ramping malnutrition, It is urgent to find alternative sources of food that can meet a growing demand while preserving the environment. At ProtERA, we strongly believe that insect farming is a major prospective for food security and environmental protection. Thus, at ProtERA, our mission is to introduce and develop insect farming in order to increase the supply of insects on food markets in Africa. We aim to establish a commercial insect farm and develop a social program that will teach rural smallholder farmers simple practices for year round insect farming through a new technology. Our vision is accessible, affordable and sustainable food for all segments of society. At ProtERA we envision a new protein for a new ERA.

Our Background

Our team has the passion and the most important skills needed in order to implement our mission. Sidiki Sow is an Agro-Environmental economist by training from McGill University. He completed a Bachelor of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences with a major in Agro-Environmental Economics and a specialization in agribusiness. He will shortly become a Professional Agronomist by entering the Order of Quebec Agronomists. As a consultant, he has already developed a project worth ½ a million dollars of profit for a multinational West African agribusiness firm. Tess Pereira holds a B.A. in Political Science, International Development Studies and Management from McGill University. After three years of experience as a financial analyst, she has decided to follow her passion and his currently completing a Masters program in food innovation at University of Modena and Reggio Emilia in Italy. Ademola Adekunle is a trained Zoologist (B.Sc University of Ibadan, Nigeria) with specializations in entomology and genetics. He is currently a PhD candidate at McGill University where he had earlier completed an MSc in Bioresource Engineering. His academic research and interests span the development of the abundant potential in Africa especially as it relates to food and energy. A published scholar, Ademola also has over 5 years of experience as a business development and research analyst with over $20 million of project developed to date and is always eager to put his diverse skill set to use in bridging the gap between research and actual realization. Our team is diverse in origins including African, European and American and we speak many languages ranging from French, English, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese and Bambara (spoken all over West Africa). Our core technical consultants are brings invaluable expertise to our work. Pierre Olivier is a PhD student in Aquaculture at Stirling University. He specialized in insect farming. He successfully produced the Black Soldier Fly larvae for 15 months in Ghana as coordinator of the ENTO-PRISE project. N'Golopé Koné is agronomist and nutritionist and is world pioneer in research on fly larvae. And for that, he received the World Bank Merit Diploma as Laureate of the Regional Development Fair (LDF) theme “Innovation in entrepreneurship”. He headed the European Union PROteINSECT Project for insect protein production from 2012 to 2016. ProtERA is also blessed to have an outstanding board of advisors. Forbes Magazine 2016 has recognized Aspire Food Group as global leader in insect farming and Africa Impact Group as pioneer in Impact Investing in Africa. We also benefit from the guidance of some of the most influential agro-industrial companies in West Africa. We're on a mission to offer the most efficient and sustainable protein to the agribusiness world. After our initial competition success at HEC Social Business Creation 2016 and Accelerate 2030 with insects for feed using the Black Soldier Fly Larvae, we are motivated to participate to the TTF in order to develop insects for food as part of our primary social program aimed at fighting against malnutrition in Africa. Food is the common thread that weaves society. Our passionate team at ProtERA sees food as an empowering tool that gives people the capacity to enhance their livelihood and well-being in a self sufficient manner. A nation is as strong as its citizens are nourished. Empowering people through nutritional, economic and social means will be the expression of our deeply passion food security and the environment.

Our Team

Our Mission

Disruptive food innovation has the power to effectively solve the pressing food security challenge of the 21st century. With a growing population, environmental degradation and ramping malnutrition, It ...Read More

Our Background

Our team has the passion and the most important skills needed in order to implement our mission. Sidiki Sow is an Agro-Environmental economist by training from McGill University. ...Read More

The information contained here represents student project ideas developed as the result of brainstorming activities during Round 1 of the TFF Challenge. It does not represent any final business plans or commercial products.