Bühler Insect Technology Solutions, a provider of integrated solutions for insect rearing and processing, is combining its strengths with Alfa Laval, a world leader in heat transfer, separation and fluid handling. Together, they will offer advanced modular insect plant solutions to the booming insect industry.

Rising costs of proteins, potential health and growth benefits of insect-based ingredients for animals and an increased focus on sustainability are strong drivers for the emerging insect industry. As a result, the sector has reported more than US$300 million of investments in 2018 alone. To leverage this booming sector, Bühler Insect Technology Solutions (BITS) and Alfa Laval have been cooperating since early 2018 with the objective of combining their strengths to provide efficient, integrated production plants.

Andreas Aepli, CEO Bühler Insect Technology Solutions, and Sumit Pingle, vice president, agro and protein systems at Alfa Laval, signed the exclusive partnership on February 22 in Uzwil, Switzerland.

“In Alfa Laval, we are proud to have found a partner who shares our approach and vision in this exciting new industry," Aepli said. "Thanks to this collaboration, we can further increase the efficiency and reliability of our solutions, setting high standards for the industry right from the start.”

“With the combined offering, we are in a unique position to provide the best insect processing solution in the market with unmatched product quality and safety,” Pingle said.

Bühler Insect Technology Solutions and Alfa Laval aim to leverage each company’s technology capabilities, engineering knowledge and market access. The two companies have jointly developed tailored solutions for heat transfer, solid and lipid separation, and fluid transfer that can be integrated seamlessly into modular insect plant solutions. Thanks to the joint expertise, these highly flexible solutions allow insect producers to easily ramp up production as demand increases. The products will be offered exclusively through Bühler Insect Technology Solutions.

The two companies will also cooperate on further research and development, marketing and after-sales services.

“We are looking forward to bringing our expertise from other applications to this dynamic new market," said Nish Patel, president of Alfa Laval’s food and water division. "The collaboration with Bühler allows us to combine our proven technology with a complete, integrated solution – and serve the customers better than either of us could on our own.”

“We are convinced that insects will play an important role in making our food system more sustainable," said Dieter Voegtli, president of the global sales and service organization at Bühler Group. "With installation works for the first industrial-scale insect plant in Europe nearing completion, we will soon have an operating proof point of the viability of our insect process technology in an industrial setting.”