Optimal insect-based feed for layer chicken production: Are farmers making profits by substituting plant-based proteins?

Published: 7 August 2023| Version 1 | DOI: 10.17632/pg4my5b753.1


Dataset comprises on growth (daily weight gain), feed intake (daily feed intake and feed conversion ratio), laying (egg production i.e number of eggs and laying percentage) and economic performance (cost of feed formulation, cost benefit analysis and marginal analysis) of Isa brown chicks, growers and layers (n= 210) fed diets integrated with various inclusion levels of full- fat black soldier fly larvae meals in Kenya. The data was collected between April 2020 and July 2021.


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The initial body weight per bird in every cage (replicate) was recorded. The birds were weighed on weekly basis by placing them on an electronic weight weighing balance. Weekly records of final live body weight, weight gain, feed consumption ( placing a known amount of feed and weigh amount left at the feeder at the end of week), and number of dead birds and daily number of eggs per cubicle were also recorded. The feed conversion ratio (FCR), average feed intake (ADFI), and average daily weight gain (ADG) were also computed. The FCR in layer hens was expressed as a ratio of feed intake to the number of eggs produced and egg weight (egg mass). FCR, g,g (chicks and growers) = Average daily feed intake /average daily gain. FCR,g/g =(feed consumed (g))/(no of eggs*egg weight(g) ) The cost benefit analyis involved; Cost benefit ratio (CBR) and Return on investment (RoI) Profits (Pr)=Selling price (US$)/bird (Spb)-Cost price (US$)of feed consumed/bird(Cfc) CBR=Spb/Cfc RoI=Profits (Pr)/Cfc*100 Marginal analyis involved Net benefits (US$ per bird) = ∑_ij^n▒( "P" _ij "Q" _ij " - " "r" _ij X_ij) (1) Marginal return rate (US$ per bird)=∂net benefits /∂ total cost that vary×100 (2) Marginal return rate (US$ per bird)=" [Σi=2 P2jQ2j - r2jX2j)] - [Σi=1(P1jQ1j - r1jX1j)] " /"Σi=2 r2jX2j-Σ i=1r1jX1j " (3) (Alemu et al. 2021 and CIMMYT 1988 ) Where:, Pij= price of final live body weight (grams) (18th week) of the grower or the price of one egg per layer hen i for respondent j, Qij = final live body weight (grams) (18th week) of the grower or the number of eggs for layer hen i for respondent j, rij = price of feed consumed by grower or layer hen i for respondent j, Xij = quantity (grams) of feed by grower or layer hen i for the respondent j, I = 1 … p, and j = 1 … n.


International Centre for Insect Physiology and Ecology


Animal Feed, Black Soldier Fly


Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research

ProteinAfrica –Grant No: LS/2020/154

IKEA Foundation


Novo Nordisk Fonden

RefIPro: NNF22SA0078466

Rockefeller Foundation

WAVE-IN—Grant No: 2021 FOD 030

Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation


HORIZON EUROPE European Innovation Ecosystems

NESTLER - Project: 101060762 - HORIZON-CL6-2021-FARM2FORK-01

Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation, the Section for research, innovation, and higher education

RAF–3058 KEN–18/0005 (CAP–Africa)

The Curt Bergfors Foundation Food Planet Prize Award

The Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency

The Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation

The Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia

The Government of the Republic of Kenya