Entobel, whose production is based on the Black Soldier Fly (BSF), said the alliance will help it accelerate its international expansion in Asia.
"IFC will support the early-stage development of Entobel’s expansion plans in Vietnam and other countries, including sharing international best practices and supporting the company in reaching its sustainability targets," a spokesperson told us.
Gaëtan Crielaard and Alexandre de Caters co-founded Entobel. Both are from Belgium, and they made the strategic decision 10 years ago to set up principal operations in Vietnam; that country’s tropical climate is ideal to rear BSF larvae, with lower energy costs compared to competitors in Europe, said the founders.
The insect ingredient producer established its first commercial site in 2019 in Vietnam after six years of pilot and demonstration scale R&D activities.
It is currently building its second facility in Vietnam, in Vung Tau province; that factory is set to be Asia’s largest insect production site to date, with production capacity of 10,000 metric tons of insect meal annually.
The funding raised through the company's Series B - $US30m - has contributed to the building of that facility. Construction of the plant is on schedule, said the firm. The first commercial sales are expected later this year, with local and international aqua feed and pet food-producing companies the target customers for that product.
R&D alliance with Adisseo
Last year, feed additive producer, Adisseo, announced it was collaborating with Entobel to optimize insect rearing.
The two companies hope to gain further insights into the nutritional requirements of BSF larvae, with the collaborators stressing the importance of producing insect derived protein and oil with good nutritional value, whatever the type and quality of the feeding substrate used.
They said they would be combining their respective areas of expertise to improve insect rearing, optimizing the raw materials use for rearing BSF larvae through the application of feed additives. Adisseo is set to leverage its knowledge of animal nutrition, amino acids requirements, animal digestibility, and NIR ingredient analysis in this respect.