Why do they breed six billion cockroaches a year on a giant farm in China

Why do they breed six billion cockroaches a year on a giant farm in China

Categories: Asia | Health and Medicine

For a Russian person, cockroaches are such parasites that operate at night in our kitchen, run into corners when you turn on the light, and do not tolerate the sight of slippers and newspapers. In China, these guys are treated very differently. Cockroaches are considered healthy there, and pharmaceutical companies have built a huge business on them, which brings a lot of money.

Why do they breed six billion cockroaches a year on a giant farm in China

Why do they breed six billion cockroaches a year on a giant farm in China

Why do they breed six billion cockroaches a year on a giant farm in China

In the city of Xichang in southwest China, there is a farm where one of the pharmaceutical companies grows cockroaches. The building is the size of two football fields filled with rows of narrow shelves, on which there are containers with food and water. The conditions on the farm are ideal for cockroaches — it is warm and humid there all year round, cockroaches can safely move around their "home", and no one bothers them. The building is almost hermetically sealed, and it is extremely difficult for a person to get there. And in his entire, albeit short, life, none of the inhabitants of the farm sees sunlight. 

At the largest cockroach farm in China, about six billion individuals are raised per year. The building is equipped with artificial intelligence, which constantly monitors 80 indicators: from air temperature to genetic mutations of cockroaches. All this is necessary in order for the insects to multiply as quickly as possible. 

Why do they breed six billion cockroaches a year on a giant farm in China

So why do pharmaceutical companies need so many cockroaches? The fact is that adults go to the production of medicinal tincture, which is used for medical purposes. The medicine has the color of tea, tastes a little sweet and smells slightly of fish. It is claimed that the potion helps in the treatment of gastroenteritis, stomach ulcers and lung diseases. According to official reports, the farm in Xichang sells tincture to more than 4 thousand hospitals across the country. 

Why do they breed six billion cockroaches a year on a giant farm in China

Cockroach has been an ingredient of traditional Chinese medicine since ancient times. Until now, in some rural regions of the country, babies are fed cockroaches with garlic to cure fever. In addition, some studies indicate a rejuvenating effect from taking a cockroach potion. 

The most important drawback of tincture is raw materials. 

Why do they breed six billion cockroaches a year on a giant farm in China

Some experts consider the accumulation of a monstrous number of insects in one place to be a huge problem. Professor Zhu Chaodong from the Chinese Academy of Sciences claims that if billions of cockroaches, now locked in one building, suddenly come out, which can happen for various reasons, ranging from human error to an earthquake, it can turn into a real disaster. Cockroaches multiply rapidly in suitable conditions, and given the warm climate of Xichang and sufficient rainfall, insects can cause huge damage to the entire neighborhood of Xichang. 

There are also concerns that the development of the farm may lead to the evolution of insects and the birth of a "super-tarakan" of abnormal size and with an incredible rate of reproduction. But Zhu Chaodong doubts such a scenario. It is believed that cockroaches have existed since the time of the dinosaurs and were able to survive the extreme conditions that led to the extinction of other species. 

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