Biointeractions and Crop Protection
Darja works at the intersection of her key research interests: maternal and child nutrition, malnutrition interventions, entomophagy and low-input sustainable aquaculture. She is examining nutritional levels of black crickets (gryllus bimaculatus) and black soldier fly larvae (hermetia illucens) as food and feed. Trials with crickets aim to improve their survival on bio-wastes; trials with black soldier fly larvae are looking at their use to reduce manure waste and to improve traditional low-input fish feed. Darja also works on a joint project, with Charlotte Payne at the University of Cambridge and funded by the Barilla Centre for Food and Nutrition. This project aims to develop a way of breeding shea caterpillars (cirina butryospermi) domestically; the caterpillars are a prized food source in Burkina Faso. Before starting these PhD studies, Darja completed an MSc in Research Sociology (Distinction) at the University of Edinburgh and a BA in Psychology (Honours with Distinction) at the University of Victoria. Her experience in social sciences provides keen insight into how best to implement interventions within local communities. Darja is also a director of the Woven Network CIC, a UK community interest company that aims to support businesses and academics working on insects for food and feed.
- Innovating insect production to counter malnutrition and support aquaculture in Africa
- 2013 - Master's of Sociology (Distinction), University of Edinburgh, Scotland
- 2012 - Bachelor (Hons) of Psychology (Distinction), University of Victoria, Canada