The world needs more food. A lot more food. But arable land and water grow more scarce by the day, and many people are understandably concerned by current solutions. Frankenfoods and chemically-driven industrial agriculture produce a lot of food, but side effects like pollution, erosion, and health problems make the whole system look very scary. We all love our local farm-to-table produce, but let’s be real: that system won’t scale to feed the tens of millions who are starving now.

But what if we found a totally new way of producing protein that:
1)
didn’t require water;
2) could happen indoors at any time of the year;
3) is totally organic with no damaging environmental consequences, and
4) is less expensive?

It’s happening now. Altruist’s newest client, Beta Hatch, is a group of self-described “insect entrepreneurs” who are working on promising ways of growing protein-rich mealworms as a better, faster, cheaper alternative to current feedstocks like soy and fishmeal, both of which come with serious economic costs and environmental problems. Whether its used for farming chickens or fish, the larva-stage beetles produced by Beta Hatch represent an entirely new technology that, if it reaches scale, holds great promise to take a lot of the cost and harm out of industrial-scale food production.

This is just the beginning. Production by-products like the insect poop or the exoskeletons can be used for everything from fertilizer to plastic substitutes, so cheaper, eco-friendly animal feed is just the beginning. We expect you’ll be reading a lot more about Beta Hatch in the future. For now, check out a recent article in the Seattle Times. In the meantime, Altruist will be hard at work helping Beta Hatch plan, finance and execute its disruptive technology—next-gen animal food that will create a healthier, more sustainable future.