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Can You Believe There Are Cockroach Farms in China?

Analysis by Dr. Joseph Mercola Fact Checked

Story at-a-glance -

  • Cockroach farms continue to pop up around China as concerns about food waste disposal become more pressing, particularly in large cities with explosive population growth
  • Roaches not only effectively devour food scraps, but they also are being used as an ingredient in health and beauty products, as well as medicines
  • Long used in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), cockroach extracts are said to be useful in treating skin wounds, diabetic ulcers and other medical conditions
  • Many Chinese eat cockroaches for food; they are known for their high protein content
  • The use of cockroaches for food waste disposal has attracted more attention in China recently due to an outbreak of African swine fever and a resultant ban on feeding human food waste to pigs in that country

The featured video, produced by the South China Morning Post, opens with these words: "If cockroaches make you uncomfortable … this could be your worst nightmare." Indeed. Most of us would do almost anything to avoid a daily work environment that involves contact with millions of teeming roaches. In China, however, cockroaches are big business.

A number of Chinese cities contending with explosive population growth are finding cockroaches to be a helpful solution to the ever-increasing problem of food waste disposal. With landfills approaching capacity in some areas, it's roaches to the rescue.


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