This prize-winning shot captures the powerful potential of a balletic swarm of tiny insects
It may appear at first a nightmarish scene, but this photo of an insect food experiment at the University of Turin could actually represent a much-needed solution to food scarcity.
It won Italian photographer Maurizio di Pietro the top prize in the most recent Environmental Photographer of the Year competition, in which snappers ranging in age from 17 to 70 put forward shots to inspire climate action.
Led by Prof Laura Gasco, the research project that captured the attention of di Pietro’s lens looks at incorporating insect flour into the diets of rainbow trout and chickens to determine its potential as a nutrition source. The Hermetia illucens, or soldier fly, is rich in proteins and a highly sustainable food source, thanks to its minimal water and soil consumption needs. By feeding on food waste, these insects also contribute to a circular economy.
The image forms part of di Pietro’s Zero Hunger series, which documents worldwide food insecurity and how insects could be part of the solution. “My home country of Italy is experiencing a frightening reality: 22% now face food insecurity, and this number is only set to increase as climate change intensifies,” he said. “Through my photographs, however, I don’t just want to document the problem, but also offer a way forward.
“Only then can we inspire people to abandon a doom-drenched view of the world and fight for a better one,” he said.
Main image: Maurizio di Pietro
You’re the solution that Positive News needs
Our small, dedicated team is passionate about building a better alternative to the negative news media. And there’s never been a greater urgency to our mission.
But to invest in producing all the solutions journalism that the world is longing for, we need funding. And because we work in your interests – not those of a wealthy media mogul or corporate owner – we’re asking readers like you to get behind our team, by making a regular contribution as a Positive News supporter.
Give once from just £1, or join 1,400+ others who contribute an average of £3 or more per month.
Join our community today, and together, we’ll change the news for good.