Some of you might have already noticed that I have opened a new tab to my page called “Entomology Patent Database”. This is a one more database project I have, this time I have collected insect rearing related patents to a file, analyzed them and put them into the right category.
The study of patents in an industry is one of the key tools to collect Competitive Intelligence, the topic I wrote about in my previous blog post. Looking at the patents you can learn many things: On what species are companies focusing on, what techniques they are using and how they feed their insects? Also by looking at the big data you can learn from which countries, companies and universities the patents are coming from and by looking at the publishing year you can see if the pace of new patents coming up is increasing or decreasing. Maybe one might also want to look for individuals behind patents for hiring purposes?
Here are some numbers from the database, any surprises for you? At the moment the database consists of 400 patents.
258 of them were originally filed in in China, 73 are originated in USA.
173 are granted patents, 227 are patent applications.
The patents are originating from 286 different companies, organizations and individuals.
36 of the patents were published in years 2015-2016, 109 in years 2013-2014.
79 different species are individually mentioned in the patents. 118 are related to more than one species. 26 patents are focusing only on Black soldier fly.
In the database there are five categories of patents: Methods (92), Apparatus (172), Insect feed (83), Separation / Collection (43) and Processing (67).
Before starting to study the patents, I did not realize that there is so big concentration of patents in China. USA being one of the main countries making patents to this industry (or almost any other industry) is no surprise. What surprised me as well was that so big number of patent applicants have applied only for one patent. The 400 patents have 286 different sources, giving the very low average of 1,4 patents per applicant. Though, must be noted that in the database for example a company A+ Individual B is considered to be different applicant as the company A alone.
Here are some of the most interesting patents in my opinion:
“Industrial scale farming apparatus for mealworm” from China, 2014.
“A fast method of forming a fly pupae” from China, 2014.
“Antropod egg harvesting method and device” from USA, 2014.
“Continuous feeding device and harvesting of larvae of diptera insects” from Spain, 2015
” Automated insect breeding system” from Singapore, 2010.
This database is not available on my website, but if you are interested, more information is available at https://ilkkataponen.com/entomology-patent-database/ or just click on the top menu for Entomology Patent Database.