It is currently not hard to encounter online articles telling about Chinese cockroach farms. Just five years ago, no American would have guessed that the term “cockroach farm” would ever come to exist. However, cockroach farms are no longer a beautiful dream, as humanity can now produce billions of mutated cockroaches every few months. Joking, of course. In reality, nothing sounds more abhorrent than a cockroach-production farm. These cockroach farms are just like any other type of farm, only they produce mass amounts of cockroaches, not foodstuffs. Lately, cockroach-based products are gaining a higher market demand in Asia. Many of the cockroaches that are raised will not be consumed as food; instead the roaches are being used to create a health “potion” that is popular in eastern medicine. This blog has mentioned these cockroach farms before, including the largest cockroach farm, which produces six billion cockroaches per year. However, many Chinese citizens are clearly disturbed about living near an enormous cockroach farm. This is in spite of the fact that cockroach-based elixirs and medical treatments are used in China regularly. Although the use of cockroach-based products is culturally acceptable in China, many citizens of the country are not willing to share their homes with billions of mouse-sized roaches.
Many experts, both inside and outside of China, have weighed in on the possible consequences of a great cockroach escape at the largest roach farm in the world. According to a spokesperson for the premier cockroach farm in China, the consequences of a colony-escape would be “catastrophic” for the nearly one million nearby residents. To give you an idea about the enormity of the roach farming industry, the largest cockroach producer in China produces twenty eight thousand cockroaches per square foot of space in one year.
Some experts fear that genetic alterations resulting in more rapid reproductive rates among roaches could cause problems within the natural environment if they ever escaped. In this case, the escaped mutant cockroaches would be like “super-cockroaches” that could dominate large areas of land. Although, this technology is by no means too advanced for the technologically sophisticated roach farms, experts working within the farm say that such a scenario is highly unlikely to ever play out in real life.
Would you be afraid of super-roach invasions if you lived near a highly productive and state-of-the-art cockroach farm?