IKEA Bootcamp, a new startup accelerator from the Swedish flat-pack furniture (and food) giant, has selected its first business after receiving more than 1,200 applications from 86 different countries.

A new insect-protein producer called Flying one of just ten start-ups to be selected to work with IKEA at its product development centre in Almhult, Sweden for three months. The business will also receive a grant of €20,000.

Flying SpArk is a new food-tech company that's focused on all-natural protein that it extracts from the Mediterranean fruit fly for human consumption.

IKEA is looking for startups to help it "solve the IKEA ‘Big Problems' around being truly affordable for the many people, reaching and interacting with the many, and enabling a positive impact on the planet, people and society”.

Flying SpArk's mission is to create a high-quality protein ingredient packed with essential minerals, raised and harvested according to sustainable principles.

This safe, sustainable ingredient is high in protein, calcium, iron and potassium and, unlike meat, it is odourless and virtually cholesterol-free, according to its maker.

Fruit fly farming requires minimal water and almost no land. The flies harvest themselves with no human intervention, which allows for clean farming.

“We are excited to join the IKEA accelerator and to have the opportunity to learn how to work with a giant retailer like IKEA,” says co-founder & CEO of Flying SpArk Eran Gronich.

“This will completely enhance our product development and how we progress. IKEA will mentor and work with our team toward eventually collaboration between the companies to develop a product and hopefully to launch it at IKEA’s restaurants.”

IKEA owns and operates 389 stores in 48 countries, and its income from foods last year was an estimated €2 billion.

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