• Tamar Zur

14 Israeli Innovative Insect related companies

Updated: Dec 13, 2020

Insects provide many useful services to humanity, like pollination, recycling organic waste, and food for humans or animal feed. In other cases, they are considered a pest that can cause direct financial damage to crops or health risks.

Israel exhibits many companies representing the insect industry and brings practical experience in the field, ranging from seasoned and globally established companies to young startups. Some use insects directly as a product or service, and others develop the essential technology related to insects. Insect farms are rearing insects through all their developmental stages, finding the optimal growing conditions for each species, developing their diets, and groundbreaking technologies to maximize productivity and minimize carbon footprint.

Here is the list of 14 innovative Israeli companies related to insect

The pioneers

  • BIOBEE Sde Eliyahu, founded in 1983, is one of the premier producers of beneficial insects and mites in the world. BIOBEES’ range of products includes:

  • Bumblebees for natural pollination

  • Beneficial insects and mites for biologically based integrated pest management

  • Sterile males for Mediterranean Fruit Fly control

BIOBEE has 6 subsidiaries, 5 production sites, and is active in over 100 markets through its various distribution channels

Team- Ran Gan-El CEO, Rami Friedman Product & Export Manager, Sandra Langer Marketing Communications, Gali Assis HR Manager, Shachar Carmi VP sales marketing and BD, Dr. Shimon Steinberg CTO & Head of R&D, Yuval Baron Startup Manager

Polyam-founded in 1995 at Kibutz Yad Mordechai and specializes in mass production of bumblebee colonies for pollination in greenhouse and orchards and produce beneficial insects. They provide biological control products and pollination services

  • Bumblebees pollination service for greenhouse and orchards

  • One predatory bug for control of thrips and one parasitic wasp against aphids.

Team- Udi Yosha Managing Director, David Doron Financial director

Insect Biotechnology

Smart Resilin (founded 2017) produces Resilin protein which is the most elastic material in nature. Resilin, an elastomeric protein found in the cuticle of most insects, produced through genetic engineering. Smart Resilin is the first company to bring Resilin into the market as a quality available raw material. Having near-perfect elasticity and resilience, Resilin can be implemented within a wide range of products such as: elastic adhesives, sports goods, flexible screens, hair straightening, 3D printing, etc. As it is a non-toxic bio-degradable protein, these resilin-based products are environmentally beneficial game changers for multiple applications. The company has filed patents in the United States, Europe, China, and Israel

Team- Prof. Oded Shoseyov CSO, Dr. Liron Nesiel-Nuttman CEO, Miki Tunis Co-Founder & Chairman, Shmil Sachar Co-Founder

Edible Insects

Flying Spark- (founded 2015) is producing Fruit Fly Larvae and the derived protein and lipids intended for animal feed, human consumption, and cosmetics. Flying Spark technology combines the farming and processing of the larvae, utilizing an efficient biological factory that can transform a low-cost proprietary diet into high-quality protein processed biomaterials. In addition, the process has minimal water and land requirements, and produces exceptionally low waste and greenhouse gas emissions. A partnership with Flying Spark and Thai-uni laid the cornerstone of a commercial state of the art automated insect farm in Thailand that will be completed in 2022.

Interview with Flying Spark

Team- Eran Gronich CEO. Keren Kles CTO and Haim Agiv VP R&D

Hargol FoodTech's mission is to deliver an alternative protein that is healthier and more sustainable. Hargol which was founded in 2016, is a global leader in grasshopper protein production. The company is the first in the world to grow several species of grasshoppers in large quantities in captivity. Their technology enables year-round production of grasshoppers at a high and constant quality. offering a rich protein ingredient with over 70% whole protein to the food and beverage industry. The company is engaged in joint ventures and pilots with global leading food producers across Africa, Asia, Central America and the Middle East and has won 16 global innovation and sustainability competitions.

Interview presenting Hargol (July 2020).

Team- Dror Tamir Co-founder & CEO, Ben Friedman Co-founder & Coo, Chana Aviv Co-founder & CTO, Mickey Attiach Production Manager

Providing services to insect farms

FreezeM founded in 2018 as a spin-off from the Weizmann Institute of Science develops solutions for Black soldier Fly (BSF) breeding for enhancing the use of insects as a protein source for animal feed. FreezeM pauses the life cycle of Black soldier Fly (BSF) at early developmental stages by freezing the insect eggs and inducing suspended animation of the neonate larvae. FreezeM's patent-pending technologies enables to deliver tightly packed ready-to-use insect eggs and neonates to insect farmers worldwide. Once defrosted, the eggs develop into larvae that eat the waste and rapidly increase their mass. The grown larvae can then be harvested and processed into protein meal. The decoupling of the insect reproduction (breeding) from the rearing process makes FreezeM the equivalent of agricultural seed company in the evolving world of insect farming.

Team- Yuval Gilad PhD Co-Founder & CEO, Idan Elyagor PhD Co-Founder & CTO, Yoav Politi PhD Co-Founder & VP R&D, David Eshed VP BD, Victoria Berkun R&D scientist, Mirit Biton R&D scientist, Egor Demechnikov Entomologist, Naama Arkin Entomologist, Victoria Kiroshka, PhD Cryobiology Specialist

Genufeed - (founded 2018) is a biotechnology start-up developing an enrichment process that turns whole BSF larvae into complete aquafeed. The unique process encapsulates BSF larvae with any missing nutrients that are essential for the optimal growth and health of fish such as certain fatty acids, amino acids, vitamins and minerals. The company’s business model is based on serving the growing market of insect farmers by enabling them to produce superior fish feed from their harvested larvae, without making large capital investments in extrusion equipment.

Team- Yair Fecher Founder & CEO, Avihai Biton COO

Insect for recycling organic materials

Entoprotech is using BSF to convert food waste into feed grate protein, fat and fertilizer. The company headquartered is in Israel where it operates R&D center. They have a pilot facility in Russia, currently processing 15 tons of food waste and providing waste management services to local food manufacturers. Their objectives are to develop and improve the production process and development of AMP’s(AMP- Anti Microbial Peptides) products, that potentially will serve as replacement for antibiotics and anti-inflammatory materials. This work performed in cooperation with Israeli leading academic institutions and hospitals. Entoprotech is raising capital and planning to build 10 facilities with processing capacity of 150 tons/day over the next 5 years.

Sasha Babitsky- CEO

Pollination- the next generation

BeeHero has developed a platform that can predict beehive disorders, mitigate colony collapse, and track pollination progress. The company provides beekeepers with sensors that are installed inside the hives to collect in-hive data and environmental information. The data is then analyzed with BeeHero's algorithms to predict beehive disorders. The system uses machine-learning technologies to build a recursive natural network that receives three types of inputs: hive state, environmental parameters, and the know-how of the commercial beekeeper

Team- Omer Davidi Co-founder & CEO, Itai Kanot Co-founder & COO, Yuval Regev Co-founder & CTO, Denise Qualls Head of Pollination, Yair Tygiel VP Strategy & Growth, Sandra Evans, PhD Senior Biologist, Ido Shveki VP R&D, Huw Evans, PhD Head of BeeHero X

Bewise- (founded 2018) The only comprehensive solution that completely automates Beekeeping to keep bees alive, healthy, thriving, and pollinating. Beewise offers autonomous beehives that operate with minimal human intervention by utilizing AI-powered precision robotics. The company's solution automates all beekeeping activities to increase yield, reduce colony loss, and eliminate the use of chemical pesticides. Beewise is a comprehensive solution that aims to keep bees alive in spite of all the stressors and challenges they face, allowing them to thrive, pollinate, and produce honey.

Team- Hallel Schreier Co-Founder & COO, Yossi Sorin Co-founder & Hardware Architect, Boaz Petersil Co-founder & Machine learning, Saar Safra Co-founder & CEO, Eliyah Radzyner Co-founder & Head of product, Oren Yakobi Head of Software engineering

ToBe Influencing Innovation founded in 2018, has developed an anti-varroa mite device designed to precisely deliver bee-healing compounds into beehives, with minimal to no effect on the bees or honey. Fumigation with ToBe's solution is fully automated and controlled, and the platform utilizes special electromechanical machinery to deliver volatile and nonvolatile compounds into the hive. For nonvolatile compounds, sublimation into the gas phase is mediated via a combustible carrier

Team- Avi Ben Shimon CEO & CTO, Dan Toren COO, Coby Levy Principal Engineer, Ron Kurkidi Chief Beekeeper, David Malchinsky Product Engineer, Gadi Kovler Tech Lead

Automation related to insect

Agrint founded in 2017 is revolutionize the agricultural world by early and precise detection of infested trees. The developed IoTree technology. This innovative solution is based on a durable, energy-efficient sensor that is highly sensitive to the slightest movement of the larvae at their early stages of life, and thus provides early detection of their activity, regardless of their size or the size of the tree. The sensor is adapted to detect the Palm Weevil larvae, an insect causing catastrophic damage to palm trees worldwide Recently, the company has developed the ability to detect other pests like the Oryctes, Fig/mango stem borer, Asian long horn beetle and more. Agrint's sensors are based on the seismic technology – which is sensitive enough to detect a small larva but accurate enough to ignore the environmental noises that cause false alarms. Their system monitors the tree and the efficiency of the treatment 24/7. Thousands of sensors have already been installed in 15 countries around the world including Spain, France, and Italy.

Team- Yehonatan Ben Hamozeg Co-Founder & CEO, Bentsi Ben-Atar Co-Founder

Metabolic Robots feeding solutions (2016) developed automatic insects farming systems that save manpower and ensures results throughout the year with modular low cost and robust design. Their insect farming modular system can process organic waste ranging from 50-400kg allowing new farmers into the industry with a fully automated rearing and harvest cycle. On Nov 2020 - they conducted a simulation with the Israeli space organization on insect farming as a means of waste treatment. A concept system was built and sent to an analogue space mission. Three other companies were involved in this innovative project, Freezem, Entoprotech and Roslin Technologies. The system is manufactured in China and distributes in 12 African countries, UK, Spain, Singapore, and Israel. They are looking for potential partners and investors to expand their distribution channels.

Ziv Dubinsky- Founder and CTO

Mosquito SIT

Senecio Robotics founded in 2013 builds solutions to automate the production and release of billions of sterile non-biting male mosquitoes to suppress diseases such as malaria, dengue, Zika, and others. The company’s solution integrates a deep learning-based sex-sorting and packaging technology with ground and aerial release systems to address the challenging processes used in large-scale mosquito deployment.

Hanan Lepek- Founder and CEO

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