At least one million cockroaches escaped a facility in China where they were being raised for use in traditional medicine.
The roaches fled the “farm” in Dafeng, in the eastern province of Jiangsu, when an “unknown perpetrator” damaged the greenhouse in which they were living, The Telegraph reported. There were more than 1.5 million cockroaches hatched and fed in that greenhouse each day.
The insects spread into the neighboring cornfields. Disease control officials sent five investigators to hatch a plan to get rid of the bugs.
The farm owner, Wang Pengsheng, spent 100,000 yuan, $16,000, on 102 kilograms of Periplaneta americana eggs, that’s the traditional American cockroach. In traditional Chinese medicine, extracts from cockroaches are used to treat disease, including cancer, improve immunity, and reduce inflammation.
Wang said he fed the roaches fruits and biscuits every day. He expected to make around 1,000 yuan, $163, in profit for every kilogram of cockroach he sold. His loss could total hundreds of thousands of yuan.