Philippe Crochard


Philippe is a serial entrepreneur, who has already created and developed 14 companies, some probably very well known to you. He is a specialist of new technologies, with an indefinite appetite for high tech and marketing of innovation. Philippe has lived few years in Asia.

He became interested in rearing larvae almost 10 years ago, during one of his trips to Asia, in the early adopting stages for these techniques and animals. He is also cofounder of a larval protein project that still exists and keeps on developing. He very quickly understood the value of chitin issued from larvae, and initiated the first market and technical approaches on the specificities of the chitin they produce. He finalized the zootechnical data that allow Alpha Chitin larvae to produce more chitin and meet the most specific demands, and the most ambitious volumes.

Philippe is President of the Holding company managing the activities of Alpha Chitin. He is more specifically in charge of strategic, administrative, accounting and legal aspects. He is also responsible for the IT and communications management of Alpha Chitin.

Jerome Delay


Jerome is an engineer in Chemical Process Engineering with a varied professional background combining managerial, financial, commercial and technological responsibilities, on several continents. He has spent the past 10 years bringing SMEs back on the path to profitability.

He joined Philippe in 2016 to work on chitin extraction and refining. He is the inventor of the extraction process (chemicals and machines), and responsible for its industrialization, from the production of the bioresource to the finished product. Jerome is also working on adapting the technologies developed to various bioresources such as krill and mushrooms. It defines the market strategies according to the chitosans products obtained.

Jerome is the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Holding company managing the activities of Alpha Chitin. He is responsible for all operational aspects of the production and sales subsidiaries, financial engineering and proposing the resulting strategies.

Story Alpha Chitin

Alpha Chitin was born from the association of 2 complementary know-how, the one developed by Philippe around the Hermetia Illucens larvae and the industrialization and chemical engineering skills developed by Jerome..

Philippe has spent nearly 4 years in Asia and France with some local partners to develop and acquire the technical data to maximize the conditions for rearing Hermetia Illucens larvae. All the possible diets were investigated (waste, cereals, palm cakes, various slurry, multiple types of manure, etc.), many operating conditions were tested. These tests would have been impossible in Europe because of the costs involved and the European legislation which does not allow most of the diets tested.

Jerome developed a chemical process for extracting chitin adapted to the characteristics of the HI larva, and to the specific diet developed to maximize the production of chitin during the growth of the larva. This process is simpler than the existing processes, compatible with the highest grades of
purity sought, with a smaller environmental footprint. This process, which is unique in the world, has proven by its characteristics to be usable on other input sources such as Krill and partially on mushrooms for the production of specific chitosans.

They joined forces with Philippe’s return from Asia and developed an integrated process for the reproduction and growth of larvae at with very high throughput, and a process for extracting and refining specific chitin / chitosan. Although the integrated process is compatible with the various expected uses of theHI larvae (transformation of organic waste, slurry removal, production of protein insect meal for animal feed), it quickly became clear that the only viable process economically in the long term in Europe is the production of high purity chitosan, from an alternative source to shrimp, traceable and with reproducible quality, according to a fully certified and auditable cycle.

The know-how acquired on larvae, around chitin as a resource and its interactions with the other elements of a bioresource, has enabled Alpha Chitin to develop integrated production processes around other bioresources: krill and fungi. Alpha Chitin, with a similar approach to the one it has with the larvae, maintains total control over the production quality of its bioresource, which is the key to the nearly total repeatability of the chitosans obtained.

Beyond the chemistries used, Alpha Chitin has developed machines and their specific operating parameters to offer its customers a very wide range of chitosan specifications. Its processes meet all customer needs around the use of chitosans, from industrial application to medical integration.

The goal of the Alpha Chitin project is to supply strong global demand with 3 different sources of chitosans meeting the expectations of the most demanding customers and to provide sustainable solutions of quality, repeatability and volume supply of chitosans in medical / pharmaceutical, cosmetics, food and environmental sectors.

Alpha Chitin defines itself as a company in the bio-sourced chemistry sector, where the resource is produced naturally and the purification of the molecule is made chemically.


Alpha Chitin’s aim is to create value for its customers, and has organized itself to deliver that goal at its best. This is why we support our customers with their chitosan sourcing process, and why we are able to offer them the right product at the right price. This is also why we are organized to help and support our clients with their ramp-ups.

Alpha Chitin has established a steering committee. This committee is composed of Alpha Chitin shareholders who are not originated from chemistry or insect production, nor have current business with them. This committee actively supports and provide guidance to Alpha Chitin with specific skills in the areas of finance, international trade, marketing, innovation and industrialization. He is the main challenger of Alpha Chitin’s strategy, in terms of respecting its customers and its technical, legal and financial obligations. The steering committee also constantly scrutinizes Alpha Chitin’s objectives in Research and Development as well as the industrialization of its technologies.

The steering committee is also particularly aware of the environmental and societal impact of Alpha Chitin, with an extremely pragmatic approach to its impact on society and the environment. These criteria have been considered in our overall production strategy, including both the biological resource and the optimized methods chosen to ensure high quality at the lowest environmental cost. Alpha Chitin is developing an industrial model that is as respectful as possible through production methods and systems designed to drastically limit the environmental footprint, with controlled energy consumption to achieve a minimum impact on global warming and safeguarding biodiversity.

Human resources

Alpha Chitin has implemented a manufacturing methodology that allows autonomy and individual empowerment. Each process step is “self-healing” allowing our employees to become more involved in respecting a specification and a goal. They are thus fully-fledged players in the customer satisfaction that we are aiming for.

In fact, we give a preponderant part to the competences over diplomas, to experiences over theories, and to a positive attitude oriented towards global progress. On a voluntary basis, Alpha Chitin wishes to go beyond the legal framework by applying development methods that encompasses respect for human diversity and creating sustainable jobs directly where we are implanted, to offer responsible management based on progress and social benefits. We are responsible, together.