A farmer in China is reportedly using 300 million cockroaches to solve a local waste food problem.
The man has been identified in China News Service as one Li Yanrong. Li, a former pharmaceutical worker, is a resident of the Zhangqiu district in Jinan in the Henan province of China.
His current setup ensures that the American roaches he rears are able to eat through 15 tons of trash every day.
Roach solution to trash problem
China currently uses fermentation to deal with its wasted food. The process is expensive, according to a South China Morning Post (SCMP) report.
The process with the roaches is cheaper and does not cause pollution, said the report, quoting China News Service. It quoted Li as saying: “These cockroaches are not afraid of anything soft, hard, sour, sweet, bitter, or spicy.”
According to the SCMP report, Li currently has 300 tons of roaches, but plans to expand it to 4,000 tons. With that capacity, the cockroaches can get rid of 200 tons of food every day.
However, Times Of Food was unable to find the China News Service report on Li.
What are American cockroaches?
The American cockroach is the largest species of common roaches in the world. They are also the largest in body size among common cockroach species.
American roaches prefer moist areas to live, but can survive in dry areas as well, if they can reach water. They are often mislabelled as waterbugs.
American cockroaches are often reared in China in farms because they are considered medicinal. In fact, such cockroaches are often used on Traditional Chinese Medicine.
Recently, a China News Service report said a farm in the Sichuan province of the country was rearing 6 billion cockroaches for their medicinal properties. The roaches would be used in the treatment of respiratory and gastric diseases, besides other ailments.