The Canadian government invests $8.5 million in the production of edible insects

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada has invested $8.5 million in Aspire, an insect production company, to build a new facility in Canada. The facility will process cricket-based proteins, helping to advance the use of insect proteins in human and pet food products..

According to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, the processing of insects for food purposes is relatively new in the country, but insect-based proteins create an opportunity for the country’s agribusiness to develop more sustainable products.

The strength of Canadian agriculture has always been its openness to new ideas and new approaches. Aspire helps reshape the way we think about agriculture and opens the door to new products and market opportunities.

Peter Fragiskatos, MP.

Founded in 2013, Aspire aims to address food shortages around the world by focusing on the production of edible insects, thereby developing highly nutritious foods and reducing their environmental impact.

The company currently has production facilities in London, Ontario and Austin, Texas. In 2020, Aspire purchased 4.85 hectares of land in Ontario to build what it hopes will be the the largest automated food grade cricket processing facility in the world.

Aspire is reimagining what it means to produce food sustainably and how smart technology can turn that vision into reality. Aspire’s innovative facility will help position Ontario as a hub of cutting-edge technology, greatly contributing to Canada’s position as an agriculture and agri-food innovator.

Francious Drouin, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada.

Apsire plans to use the investment, along with smart technology, to build its first commercial insect production facility in Ontario. The facility will enhance Aspire’s insect farming capabilities, allowing it to grow and monitor billions of cricketswhich will be used to create nutrient-dense protein ingredients for the animal and food industries.

Aspire thanks Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada for supporting our first commercial installation. A growing population and increased demand for food and materials require sustainable and scalable solutions that keep our world healthy.

Mohammed Ashour, co-founder and CEO of Aspire.

The company plans to use the technology to dramatically reduce production costs, making its products more affordable for food industries in Canada and around the world.

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s investment comes from the AgriInnovate program, an initiative to accelerate the commercialization of innovative products, technologies and processes that increase Canada’s competitiveness in the agricultural marketplace.

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