Kevin Waithaka Mwangi (Kenya)
Research project title: Evaluation of growth performance of Improved Indigenous Chicken fed on diets containing Black Soldier Fly Larvae Meal.
Kevin is a DRIP MSc. Student Supervised by Dr. Komi Fiaboe (ICIPE) and Drs. Isaac Osuga and Prof. Lucy Kabuage (Kenyatta University). Kevin’s research interest is in animal nutrition and he is doing his research on the use of black soldier fly larvae meal as an alternative protein source for improved indigenous chicken in Kenya. The study evaluates the growth performance of improved indigenous chicken fed on diets containing black soldier fly larvae meal. In Kenya, the indigenous chicken enterprise has been identified as an economic tool for poverty alleviation in rural households. There has also been a consistent increase in the demand for IC products (meat and eggs), mainly driven by the steady rise of health conscious consumers and the perceived special flavor. However, the supply of indigenous chicken products has continuously been affected by low IC productivity, linked to poor nutrition among other factors. Financially, feed constitutes about 70% of the total cost in poultry production. The high cost of feed resources especially protein concentrates is due to their high unavailability. It is essential to, therefore, consider alternative poultry feed resources. Researchers have identified insect meals, particularly black soldier fly larvae meal as one of the alternative sources that could enhance food and feed security. This study aims to provide information on the nutritive value of locally prepared black soldier fly larvae meal and to determine the growth performance of improved indigenous chicken fed on diets containing graded levels of the meal.