Skip links

Exploring the Amazing Nutritional Benefits of Black Soldier Fly Larvae in Pet Food

The pet food manufacturing industry is constantly evolving, calling for a never-ending hunt for ingredients that are both innovative and sustainable. To stay ahead of the curve, research into possible new ingredients is essential to challenge industry standards. Black soldier fly larvae are becoming a promising new ingredient for sustainable pet food manufacturing, as they are rich in nutrients and highly efficient to produce with minimal environmental impact. Join us as we uncover the nutritional benefits of black soldier fly larvae in pet food. We will explore the potential for this insect-derived food source to provide high-quality nutrition and how current industry research and practices are developing methods to incorporate black soldier fly larvae in pet food. We’ll look at the ways they can improve existing pet food formulas, and how farmers, manufacturers, and wholesalers can work together to adopt black soldier fly larvae into pet food production.

BSFL Meal VS Conventional Protein Sources

The table below from the research conducted by the Department of Animal Biosciences, University of Guelph, ON, Canada shows the comparison in nutrient content between four conventional sources of protein (Casein, SBM, Fishmeal, and BSFLM) and the combination of BSFLM plus Fishmeal (BSFLM+). BSFLM (black soldier fly larvae meal) is a promising new ingredient for pet food. It has a higher level of crude protein, crude fat, and a relatively low carbohydrate level compared to the other sources. Additionally, it has a higher level of essential minerals such as magnesium and potassium which can be beneficial for pet health. The combination of BSFLM and Fishmeal (BSFLM+) gives the best of both worlds as it provides both high nutrition and a more sustainable and eco-friendly option. However, Flylab’s FLMeal can offer 60% of protein content in dry matter because of our high-quality production procedure making us the best choice for sustainable pet nutrition.

How is Black Soldier Fly Larvae Used in Pet Food?

The flow diagram below illustrates the different stages of the black soldier fly larvae processing cycle to create different food ingredients used for pet food is presented. The larvae are carefully collected, cleaned, and inspected to ensure their safety and quality. FLMeal (black soldier fly larvae powder) and FLOil (black soldier fly larvae oil) are utilized in pet treats, kibbles, and wet food products, mainly for cats and dogs, while FLDried (dried black soldier fly larvae) is used for exotic pet food, such as chameleons, turtles, and geckos.


The digestibility of black soldier fly (BSFL) meal in pet food has been extensively studied, and the results consistently demonstrate its high nutritional value. Most studies indicate that dog diets containing BSFL meal exhibit excellent nutrient digestibility, establishing BSFL meal as a top-tier protein and amino acid source. In terms of palatability, cats have shown a preference for diets containing BSFL, leading to increased consumption, which reflects its higher palatability compared to traditional poultry-based diets. Importantly, the inclusion of BSFL in diets for cats did not adversely affect fecal characteristics. Although there was a slight reduction in nutrient digestibility in cats fed BSFL-based diets, it remained within acceptable limits. Similarly, in studies involving beagles, diets incorporating up to 20% BSFL meal and 5% BSFL oil were well-accepted by the dogs, demonstrating the feasibility of replacing poultry meal and fat with BSFL-based ingredients. Notably, there were no significant differences in the dogs’ body weight, food consumption, or general health, and their stool quality and blood parameters remained within normal ranges throughout the trial. The apparent total tract digestibility of all nutrients remained good and was not negatively impacted by the inclusion of BSFL meal or oil. This extensive trial collectively confirms the safety and nutritional advantages of including BSFL meal and oil in pet food formulations, reinforcing its potential as a sustainable and highly beneficial protein source.


The palatability of black soldier fly (BSFL) meal in the context of dog food presents a promising perspective for sustainability in the pet food industry. BSFL meal, derived from a more environmentally friendly source compared to conventional meat and fish, is emerging as an appealing alternative. Studies have revealed that dogs exhibit a strong preference for BSFL-based food, even surpassing their preference for fishmeal-based food. Remarkably, a significant majority of dogs, approximately 75%, not only preferred but also eagerly consumed BSFL-based diets, often choosing them over alternatives. Furthermore, when compared to low-cost food options, BSFL-based diets maintained their appeal, with 52% of dogs showing a preference for BSFL, and an impressive 89% of dogs consistently finishing their BSFL diet compared to 78% on other diets. These findings underscore the potential of BSFL meal not only as a sustainable protein source but also as a palatable and highly accepted ingredient in dog food, aligning with the growing demand for environmentally responsible and nutritious pet nutrition solutions.


The health implications of incorporating black soldier fly larvae (BSFL) protein derivatives into the diets of dogs are supported by a series of in-vitro assays, utilizing various forms of BSFL meal and hydrolysates. These studies have yielded remarkable findings, notably the identification of a strong antiarthritic potential within BSFL protein derivatives. This remarkable attribute can be largely attributed to the presence of glucosamine, a well-known compound renowned for its joint-supporting properties. Notably, these findings suggest that the integration of BSFL-derived products into canine diets may not only serve as a preventive measure against the development of arthritis but also contribute to the alleviation of arthritis symptoms in dogs. This research highlights the multifaceted health benefits that BSFL protein derivatives possess, positioning them as a promising avenue for enhancing the overall well-being and joint health of dogs. As a result, these findings are poised to usher in a new era of potential therapeutic applications for BSFL-based ingredients in the realm of pet nutrition and health.


Black soldier fly larvae (BSFL) have shown promising potential as a hypoallergenic source of protein for pets. While the effectiveness of insect-based pet foods in treating true food allergies is still uncertain, these foods are marketed as hypoallergenic due to the unique proteins they contain, which are less likely to trigger allergic responses in pets. This hypoallergenic aspect makes BSFL an interesting option for pets with allergies, as they carry a lower risk of dermatological problems or gastrointestinal inflammations compared to traditional protein sources.

Flylab’s Mission to Contribute to Sustainable Pet Food

The world of pet food is in the midst of a transformative journey, driven by innovation and sustainability. At Flylab, we are working hard to deliver sustainable pet nutrition solutions that not only provide superior nutrition to pets but also contribute to a more sustainable future. We are committed to supporting the pet food industry in its relentless pursuit of higher-quality, more sustainable ingredients and look forward to playing our part in this evolution.

If you’re ready to embark on a journey toward superior pet nutrition and sustainable practices, we invite you to take the next step. Discover the incredible potential of our products, such as FLDried, FLOil, and FLFrass, and make a positive impact on your pet’s life and the environment.

Don’t hesitate to reach out to us at Flylab. Our dedicated team is not only here to provide information but to empower you with the knowledge and resources you need to make a difference.