There are so many environmental problems facing humanity today that it can be difficult to name them all. The ozone is disappearing, fossil fuels are polluting the planet’s ecosystems and deforestation is leading to species displacement and even extinction. When it comes to deforestation, most people may be under the impression that all those trees are cut down solely to collect lumber. However, in most cases of vast deforestation, trees are brought down in order to clear land for cattle grazing. It may seem wasteful to destroy the rainforest for hamburgers, but this is the reality. Of course, there are plenty of environmental activists that positively influence changing attitudes toward the natural environment. Also, many modern eco-friendly businesses are popping up in order to market more sustainable and greener forms of energy production. However, there is one large business that is joining the fight against deforestation. Surprisingly, this business is McDonalds.
At the moment, McDonald’s uses protein derived from soy as feed for their chickens. Initially, it would seem that soy would be a more environmentally friendly method of obtaining protein when compared to livestock protein. However, much like livestock, soy extraction and production is also driving deforestation. A spokesperson for McDonald’s has claimed that the corporation is dedicated to preserving the world’s forests. Therefore, by 2020 McDonalds will be switching from soy protein to an alternative eco-friendly protein feed for their chickens. At the moment, it seems as though this new chicken feed will contain insect protein.
According to experts, insect feed is superior to seaweed-based feed. This is because insects are more digestible than vegetable proteins in poultry. Despite the many benefits of using insect feed for chickens, one spokesperson for the fast food restaurant claimed that insect protein is currently priced at double its nutritional value. Therefore, using insect feed is not yet a financially sound solution.
Do you think that other large corporations will follow McDonalds lead and also use insect protein as animal feed?