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Editorial comment

Around the world, people are embracing new freedoms as lockdown restrictions begin to ease, with the openings of bars, restaurants and increased social movement to visit friends and family. However, with numbers beginning to rise in many countries, fears of a second wave are becoming very real – with regional lockdowns becoming commonplace in areas of increased cases.

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One saving grace from the current morose reality has been the escapism found in television and film. Numbers of people paying to watch streaming services have hit record levels, with nearly 16 million people signing up for Netflix alone in the first three months of 2020.1 But there is only so many reruns of shows that you can watch before even your favourite series loses its appeal. As with almost every industry, the television industry has been hard hit by the advent of coronavirus, with social distancing making filming difficult, if not impossible (for example, it will probably be quite hard to get the same dramatic effect in a fight scene if all the actors must keep 2 m apart).

Nevertheless, one reality show that the British public in particular will be happy to hear have found a creative solution to the corona-conundrum is ITV’s ‘I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here!’ this November. In order to comply with COVID-19 regulations, the contestants this year will have to self-isolate for two weeks ahead of the 2020 series. For those who have not heard of it, the premise of the show is rather simple: a group of celebrities live together in the middle of the Australian jungle, with few creature comforts. In order to secure additional food and treats for fellow campmates, members of the group have to undertake gruesome challenges, named Bushtucker trials.

Many of the trials are both physically and mentally taxing, but for me – a self-admitting fussy eater – the worst challenges are easily the eating challenges. Past foods include crickets (in a variety of forms included being cooked into biscuits, blended into a drink, or eaten dead), green ants, roasted tarantulas, and cockroaches, just to name a few. In previous series, live bugs were also eaten as part of the challenge, but in 2019 it was announced that this would no longer be permitted.

While live bugs are no longer taking an active role in the diet of the ‘I’m a Celeb’ contestants, they may soon become active members of the fertilizer industry. Companies such as Meal Food Europe and Ÿnsect have, in 2020, announced market approvals for insect-based fertilizers. The products are derived from the insect waste – or frass – of the mealworm, and has been designed to be used as a partial or complete substitute for mineral fertilizers.2,3

Even in the face of a global pandemic the fertilizer industry is seeing a vast array of innovation. In order to ensure that you do not miss out on any of the latest developments, I’d encourage you to add our website ( to your bookmarks and follow us on social media to guarantee to receive the latest fertilizer news.

  1. ‘Netflix gets 16 million new sign-ups thanks to lockdown,’ BBC News (22 April 2020),
  2. ‘MealFood Europe obtained in January the first market approval for an insect-based fertilizer,’ Meal Food Europe, (27 July 2020)
  3. ‘Ÿnsect, the first company in the world to obtain market approval for an insect-based fertilizer,’ Ÿnsect, (1 July 2020)