Growth performance of novel food based on mixture of boiled-dried granulated Tenebrio molitor larvae and date-fruit waste in broiler chicken farming




Abstract. Debache K. 2021. Growth performance of novel food based on mixture of boiled-dried granulated Tenebrio molitor larvae and date-fruit waste in broiler chicken farming. Asian J Agric 4: 22-28. The present study was conducted to evaluate the growth performance of a new diet based on mixture of boiled-dried granulated Tenebrio molitor larvae (Tm) and date-fruit waste (Dw) in broiler chicken diet. A total of 56 two-day old broilers were randomly allotted to 4 dietary groups each with 2 replicates consisting of 7 broilers (C1, C2, Diet1 and Diet2). Equal mixture of three commercial cereal-based diets (chick starter feed, chick grower feed, and chick finisher feed) were formulated. The first control (C1) was 100% the commercial mixture. Second control (C2) is obtained by mixing 50% commercial mixture with 50% Dw. While the other groups (Diet1 and Diet2) were formulated by adding three ingredients at different proportions: 50% commercial mixture: 40% Dw: 10% Tm (Diet1) and 50% commercial mixture: 10% Dw: 40% Tm (Diet2). After the evaluation of daily body weight, clinical signs, specific growth rate and other clinical tests, the chickens were slaughtered at 60 days. Hematological, biochemical, copro-parasitological and bacterial investigations were performed based on samples taken day 60. Weight gain of broilers fed with Diet1 was almost similar to broilers fed with first control (C1) diet. However, those fed with Diet2 were significantly (P<0.05) higher than all other dietary groups (C1, C2 and Diet1). Hematological and serum biochemical traits showed no dietary adverse effect, and copro-parasitological diagnosis was negative in all different dietary groups. Moreover, similar microbial communities were detected in digestive system parts of the same animal, no matter in relation to Tm inclusion or no. In conclusion, the overall results collected in this current study propose that date-fruit waste could be used as an exclusive feed for T. molitor insect rearing and dietary inclusion of mixture Dw-Tm into broilers meal could become a partial substitute for commercialized cereal-based diet without affecting the health of broilers.


Abdel-Hafez MJ, Fouad-Shalaby A, Akhal I. 1980. Chemical composition of 15 varieties of dates grown in Saudi Arabia. Proceedings of the 4th Symposium of Saudi Biological Society, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, 4: 180-94.
Aguilar-Miranda ED, López MG, Escamilla-Santana C, Barba de la Rosa AP. 2002. Characteristics of maize flour tortilla supplemented with ground Tenebrio molitor larvae. J. Agric. Food Chem., 50 (1): 192-195.
Almeida JG, Vieira SL, Gallo BB, Conde ORA, Olmos AR. 2006. Period of incubation and post hatching holding time influence on broiler performance. Brazilian Journal of Poultry Science 2006; 8 (3):153158.
Al-Farsi M, Al-Asalvar C, Al-Abid M, Al-Shoaily K, Al-Amry M, Al-Rawahy F. 2007. Compositional and functional characteristics of dates, syrups, and their by-products. Food Chem. 104, 943-947.
Aviagen, 2014. Ross 708 broiler. Broiler performance objectives. Available from:
Azcona JO, Schang MJ, Garcia PT, Gallinger C, Ayerza JR, Coates W. 2008. Omega-3 enriched broiler meat: The in?uence of dietary ?-linolenic-?-3 fatty acid sources on growth, performance and meat fatty acid composition. Can. J. Anim. Sci. 2008, 88, 257-269.
Ballweber LR, Beugnet F, Marchiondo AA, Payne PA. 2014. American Association of Veterinary Parasitologists’ review of veterinary fecal flotation methods and factors influencing their accuracy and use - is there really one best technique? Vet Parasitol. 2014; 204:73-80.
Baraem I, Imad H, Riad B, Yehia M, Jeya H. 2006. Physicochemical characteristics and total quality of ?ve date varieties grown in the United Arab Emirates. Int. J. Food Sci. Technol. 41, 919-926.
Ballitoc DA, Sun S. 2013. Ground yellow mealworms (Tenebrio molitor L.) feed supplementation improves growth performance and carcass yield characteristics in broilers. Open Science Repository Agriculture. doi:10.7392/ openaccess.23050425.
Bhattacharya AK, Ameel JJ, Waldbauer GP. 1970. A method for sexing living pupal and adult yellow mealworms. Ann. Entomol. Soc. Am. 63, 1783.
Biasato I, De Marco M, Rotolo L, Renna M, Lussiana C, Dabbou S, Capucchio MT, Biasibetti E, Costa P, Gai F, et al. 2016. E?ects of dietary Tenebrio molitor meal inclusion in free-range chickens. J. Anim. Physiol. Anim. Nutr. (Berl). 2016, 100, 1104-1112.
Biasato I, Gasco L, De Marco M, Renna M, Rotolo L, Dabbou S, Capucchio MT, Biasibetti E, Tarantola M, Bianchi C, et al. 2017. E?ects of yellow mealworm larvae (Tenebrio molitor) inclusion in diets for female broiler chickens: Implications for animal health and gut histology. Anim. Feed Sci. Technol. 2017, 234, 253-263.
Biasato I, Gasco L, De Marco M, Renna M, Rotolo L, Dabbou S, Capucchio MT, Biasibetti E, Tarantola M, Sterpone L, Cavallarin L, Gai F, Pozzo L, Bergagna S, Dezzutto D, Zoccarato I, Schiavone A. 2018. Yellow mealworm larvae (Tenebrio molitor) inclusion in diets for male broiler chickens: effects on growth performance, gut morphology and histological findings. Poultry Science 97, 540-548.
Bovera F, Piccolo G, Gasco L, Marono S, Loponte R, Vassalotti G, Mastellone V, Lombardi P, Attia YA, Nizza A. 2015. Yellow mealworm larvae (Tenebrio molitor, L.) as a possible alternative to soybean meal in broiler diets. Br. Poult. Sci. 56:569-575.
Bovera F, Loponte R, Marono S, Piccolo G, Parisi G, Iaconisi V, Gasco L, Nizza A. 2016. Use of Tenebrio molitor larvae meal as protein source in broiler diet: effect on growth performance, nutrient digestibility and carcass and meat traits. J. Anim. Sci. 94:639-647.
Coles EH. 1986. Veterinary Clinical Pathology, 4th ed. Saunders, Philadelphia, pp: 279-291.
Daraghmeh NH, Chowdhry BZ, Leharne SA, Al Omari MM, Badwan AA. 2011. Chapter 2-Chitin. In Profiles of Drug Substances Excipients, and Related Methodology; Harry, G.B., Ed.; Academic Press: Waltham, MA, USA, 2011; Volume 36, pp. 35-102.
Debache K. 2017. Food product intended for the animals of breeding and its process of preparation, DZ Patent Number 140253, licensed 09/11/2017.
Dobermann D, Swift JA, Field LM. 2017. Opportunities and hurdles of edible insects for food and feed. Nutrition Bulletin. 42 (4), pp. 293-308.
FAO. 2013. Edible insects – future prospects for food and feed security. FAO Forestry Paper 171:IX.
Gasco L, Finke M, Van Huis A. 2018. Can diets containing insects promote animal health? J. Insects as Food Feed 2018, 4.
Gurevich V, Lavi U, Cohen Y. 2005. Genetic variation in date palms propagated from offshoots and tissue culture. J Am Soc Hortic Sci 130:46-53.
Gross WB, Siegel HS. 1983. Evaluation of the heterophil/lymphocyte ratio as a measure of stress in chickens. Avian Diseases, 27, 972-979.
Holt JG, Krieg NR, Sneath PHA, Stanley JT, William ST. 1994. Bergey’s Manual of Determinative Bacteriology. Williams and Wilikins, Baltimore, 786-788.
Jones LD, Cooper RW, Harding RS. 1972. Composition of mealworm Tenebrio molitor larvae. J Zoo Anim Med. 3:34-41.
Khan SH. 2018. Recent advances in role of insects as alternative protein source in poultry nutrition. J.Appl. Anim. Res. 2018, 46, 1144-1157.
Kralik G, Kralik Z. 2017. Poultry products enriched with nutricines have beneficial effects on human health. Med Glas (Zenica). 2017 Feb 1;14(1):1-7.
Kröncke N, Grebenteuch S, Keil C, Demtröder S, Kroh L, Thünemann AF, Benning R, Haase H. 2019. E?ect of di?erent drying methods on nutrient quality of the yellow mealworm (Tenebrio molitor L.). Insects 2019, 10, 84.
Leboffe MJ, Pierce BE. 2002. Microbiology Laboratory Theory and Application. Co. MP, editor. Englewood, CO2002.
Lee CG, Silva CAD, Lee JY, Hartl D, Elias JA. 2008. Chitin regulation of immune responses: an old molecule with new roles. Current Opinion in Immunology 20: 684-689.
Lwalaba D, Ho?mann KH, Woodring J. 2010. Control of the release of digestive enzymes in the larvae of the fall armyworm, Spodoptera frugiperda. Arch. Insect Biochem. Physiol. 2010, 73, 14-29.
Makkar HPS, Tran G, Heuzé V, Ankers P. 2014. State-of-the-art on use of insects as animal feed. Anim. Feed Sci. Tech., 197: 1-33.
Nowak V, Persijn D, Rittenschober D, Charrondiere UR. 2016. Review of food composition data for edible insects. Food Chem. 193,39-46.
Oguz H, Kurtoglu F, Kurtoglu V, Birdane YO. 2002. Evaluation of biochemical characters of broiler chickens during dietary aflatoxin (50 and 100 ppb) and clinoptilolite exposure. Research in Veterinary Science 2002; 73:101-103.
Oonincx DGAB, Van Broekhoven S, Van Huis A, Van Loon JJA. 2019. Correction: Feed Conversion, Survival and Development, and Composition of Four Insect Species on Diets Composed of Food By-Products. PLoSONE 14 (10):e0222043.
Payne CL, Scarborough P, Rayner M, Nonaka K. 2016. Are edible insects more or less “healthy” than commonly consumed meats? A comparison using two nutrient pro?ling models developed to combat over- and undernutrition. Eur. J. Clin. Nutr. 70, 285-291.
Perez JF, Gernat AG, Murillo JG. 2000. The effect of different levels of palm kernel meal in layer diets. Poult. Sci., 79: 77-79.
Ramos-Elorduy J, González EA, Hernández AR, Pino JM. 2002. Use of Tenebrio molitor (Coleoptera: tenebrionidae) to recycle organic wastes and as feed for broiler chickens. J Econ Entomol. 95: 214-220.
Robertson GW, Maxwell MH. 1990. Modified staining techniques for avian blood cells. Br Poult Sci. 31, 881-886
Roberson WH. 2005. Urban Insects and Arachnids, a Handbook of Urban Entomology. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK, pp. 126e127.
Rumpold BA, Schlüter OK. 2013. Nutritional composition and safety aspects of edible insects. Mol. Nutr. Food Res. 57, 802-823.
Scanes CG. 2015. Blood. In Sturkie’s avian physiology, 6th ed.; Scanes, C.G., Ed.; Academic Press: Cambridge, MA, USA.
Simaraks S, Chinrasri O, Aengwanich W. 2004. Hematological, electrolyte and serum biochemical value of the Thai indigenous chickens (Gallus domesticus) in northeastern of Thailand. Songklanakarin J. Science and Technol., 26: 425-430.
Silva PRL, Freitas Neto OC, Laurentiz AC, Junqueira OM, Fagliari JJ. 2007. Blood Serum Components and Serum Protein Test of Hybro-PG Broilers of Different Ages. Brazilian Journal of Poultry Science. ISSN 1516-635X Oct - Dec 2007 / v.9 / n.4 / 229-232.
Suzuki M, Fujimoto W, Goto M, Morimatsu M, Syuto B, Toshihiko I. 2002. Cellular expression of gut chitinase mRNA in the gastrointestinal tract of mice and chickens. J. Histochem. Cytochem., 50: 1081-1089.
Szabo A, Mezes M, Horn P, Suto Z, Bazar G, Romvari R. 2005. Developmental dynamics of some blood biochemical parameters in the growing turkey (Meleagris Gallopavo). Acta Veterinary Hungary 2005; 53 (4):397-409
Talebi A, Asri-Rezaei S, Rozeh-Chai R, Sahraei R. 2005. Comparative Studies on Haematological values of Broiler Strains (Ross, Cobb, Arbor-acres and Arian). International J. Poultry Sci., 4: 573-579.
Van Broekhoven S, Oonincx DGAB, Van Huis A, Van Loon JJA. Growth performance and feed conversion efficiency of three edible mealworm species (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae) on diets composed of organic by-products. Journal of Insect Physiology. 2015;73(0):1-10.
Vandepopuliere J, Al-Yousef Y, Lyons J. 1995. Dates and date pits as ingredients in broiler starting and Coturnix quail breeder diets. J. Poult. Sci., 74(7): 1134-1142.
Veldkamp T, Van Duinkerken G, Van Huis A, Lakemond C MM, Ottevanger E, Bosch G, Van Boekel MAJS. 2012. Insects as a sustainable feed ingredient in pig and poultry diets - a feasibility study. Wageningen UR Livest. Res., Report 638.
Zuidhof MJ, Molnar CL, Morley FM, Wray TL, Robinson FE, Khan BA, Al-Ani L, Goonewardene LA. 2003. Nutritive value of house fly (Musca domestica) larvae as a feed supplement for turkey poults. Anim. Feed Sci. Tech. 105:225-230.