Last month, we were lucky enough have a taste education workshop ‘Love Bug’ in Oxford, serving up an unusual evening meal of edible insects! The surprisingly tasty critters were part of an aphrodisiacal foods taster evening, and are becoming increasingly popular across the world as a more sustainable source of protein. Missed all the buzz? Read more in this special blog from organiser Rebecca Roberts.
Entomophagy (i.e. eating edible insects) has been a longstanding gastronomic practice in Asia, Africa, Oceania and Central America, thanks to a diverse insect population and continued demand for seasonal, wild foods. From over 2000 species of edible insect, the favourites arebeetles (31% of consumption), caterpillars (18%), wasps and ants (14%) and then other species such as grasshoppers, crickets and worms.
4. Insects I said millennials had some weird tastes, and though bugs have been used as a source of protein in many cultures for eons -- they're high in minerals and vitamins, too -- getting beyond the ick factor in Western society has been extremely difficult. The trick, it seems, is disguising them as more familiar foods.
Protein bars from Exo, for example, are made from cricket flour and are described as a dense, moist, and chewy alternative to the meat bars above. Next Millennium Farms provides cricket flour, mealworm flour, and more to substitute in baking. Banana cricket bread anyone?
CIUDAD DE MÉXICO, 30 de agosto.-Mientras la Organización de Naciones Unidas para la Alimentación y la Agricultura (FAO) hace la pregunta de si los insectos podrían contribuir a la seguridad alimentaria del mundo, México se aproxima a la celebración de los 500 años de la Historia general de las cosas de la Nueva España, donde fray Bernardino de Sahagún describió en 1569 al chapoli o chapulín, que gana fama en los restaurantes de México y del extranjero.
In the second of our five-part series on Mexico’s rich and varied gastronomy, we talk you through the four juicy bugs you must try.
Ana C. Day's insight:
"The southern state of Oaxaca is best-known in Mexico for its delicious mole negro, a dark sauce made from chilhuacle negro chillies and eaten with chicken or turkey. But in fact, Mexico’s fifth-largest state is made up of seven different regions, each with its own ecosystem providing a huge variety of ingredients. "
Grâce à ses prêts d'honneur, Aquitaine Amorçage offre à Entomo Farm de nouvelles perspectives en matière de R&D dans la filière entomocole
Ana C. Day's insight:
"Passionné depuis l’âge de 8 ans par l’univers des insectes et convaincu qu’ils représentent une solution aux défis alimentaires d’aujourd’hui et de demain, Grégory LOUIS envisage dans un premier temps de se lancer dans la production d’insectes. Mais, constatant qu’aucun outil ne permettait de produire des insectes avec un niveau sanitaire correct et traçable, il a donc décidé de s’attaquer à la conception de solutions industrielles d’élevage d’insectes."
Thanks to its feeding habits, the oriental latrine fly could just play a major role in food and environmental sustainability.
Ana C. Day's insight:
"Rearing insects as livestock does not require land clearing, reduces greenhouse gas emissions and produces a more efficient protein source—a higher proportion of food eaten by insects is converted into edible protein, compared to rearing traditional livestock such as cattle, sheep, and poultry. Furthermore, insects can be fed directly on organic waste, effectively recycling nutrients back to human-edible material at a faster rate."
Edible insects are a common ingredient in traditional dishes in many parts of Africa, a continent with more than 250 potentially edible insect species. As the world’s population continues to grow, there is renewed interest in the use of insects as human food. Insects provide animal protein of good quality, and they are rich in lipids and macronutrients. The many edible insect species – an accessible and affordable source of food – can contribute to food security. This Agrodok shows where to find, and how to collect and prepare, 10 different insect species from 5 groups: caterpillars, beetles, termites, grasshoppers and crickets. With the information in this Agrodok, Agromisa aims to contribute to the use of edible insects as a means to securing access to sufficient quantities of nutritious food.
COURTNEY Yule, 22, is a product design graduate who lives in Edinburgh.
”As I placed the dish into the oven, I wondered how my new macaroni recipe would turn out. This was no ordinary pasta bake. This concoction contained a layer of mealworms – hundreds of dead little larva I’d bought off the internet.
My bug-eating escapades began in 2014, when I had to invent and create a product as part of my product design course at Edinburgh Napier University.
After wracking my brains to find an original idea, I came across the term ‘entomophagy’ – insect eating. While it’s perfectly normal in some parts of the world, in Western society it’s still considered taboo, despite the fact that insects are extremely nutritious.
About entrepreneurs and entrepreneurship at VT KnowledgeWorks
Ana C. Day's insight:
"The People’s Choice award of $5,000, sponsored by Virginia Tech’s Outreach and International Affairs, was selected by vote of the event attendees at the Global Student Entrepreneurship Challenge. The People’s Choice was awarded to Team EntoLog of ZHAW Zurich University of Applied Sciences, Zurich, Switzerland whose business concept aims to help tackle the growing global challenge of producing nutritious protein-rich foods using an innovative technology that enables the extraction of proteins and other valuable nutritional products from insects. Meinrad Koch, Stefan Klettenhammer, and Philippe Geiger presented the concept."
AbstractOne of the major, if not the major impediment to large scale increases of human insect consumption, is the strong rejection of insects as food by most of the world’s population. In an effort to understand this aversion, we surveyed online samples of adults living in the USA and India to participate in a study on ‘attitudes toward food’. A substantial proportion of both Americans (72%) and Indians (74%) were at least willing to consider eating some form of insect food. Men were more willing to try eating insects than were women, especially in the USA. Disgust seems to be the most common reaction of both groups at the prospect of eating insects. The most common perceived benefits of eating insects were related to nutrition and environmental sustainability, and the most common risks related to risk of disease and illness. Both groups find ants the most palatable of a set of seven possible insects, and cockroaches the most unpalatable. In both samples, participants were most amenable to eating low levels of insect flour in a favourite food, and most averse to consuming whole insects. The best predictors of insect acceptance were disgust at the thought of eating insects, beliefs about the benefits of eating insects, sensation seeking, and the enjoyment of telling others about consumption of unusual foods.
Scientists have discovered that consumption of desert locust reduces risks of heart disease. This revelation comes at a time when FAO encouraged people to embrace edible insects as a mitigating factor against food insecurity.
The study that was conducted jointly by icipe, Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture, Technology and United States Department of Agriculture/Agricultural Research Service (USDA/ARS) highlights the benefits of desert locust which hitherto have been dreaded by farmers for its mass destruction.
A lot of people around the world eat bugs. Chances are you're not one of them, assuming our analytics are correct. Just the thought of crunching down on a creepy crawler sends shivers through the typical American endoskeleton. Many Westerners think of eating bugs as a gross third-world custom... or just what Anthony Bourdain does when he's on vacation.
But much of what we think we know about insects resides in the realm of myth. They're not unhealthy. They're often quite tasty. They're loaded with the sort of nutritious good stuff dietary professionals love. And sooner or later we're probably going to have to get over our apprehensions and embrace these remarkably efficient sources of protein.
Two new, versatile production platforms created by ingredient supplier C-fu FOODS could crack open the nascent insect protein commodity market in North America by “abstracting the product from its source,” a company co-founder says. “We are trying to use novel food processes to change insects’ shapes and texture to something more familiar that is easier and exciting to work with,” Eli Cadesky, CEO of C-fu FOODS, told FoodNavigator-USA.
“There are a lot of people who are interested in food and technology and who want to do good things for the world,” Metcalfe said Insects as an alternative protein source have received a lot of attention as startups launch to grow bugs for consumption. In fact, a few cricket-based products pitched as finalists at the last food challenge. “The tough challenge is to convince people to overcome their cultural barriers,” Metcalfe said. “That’s a tough mountain to climb.” And alternative food sources like Soylent, a meal replacement drink, have also garnered a lot of attention.
Published on Aug 26, 2015 Watch Beaty Biodiversity Museum staff, students, and volunteers eating insects for the very first time. Join Beaty Biodiversity Museum members for a special Bugs and Beer night featuring edible insects from Next Millennium Farms and Grasshopper Wheat Ale from Big Rock Brewery.
Bugs are a greener alternative source of protein, but US consumers are still grossed out by eating crickets. Will companies be able to make insect farming viable?
Ana C. Day's insight:
"Chapul, Exo and Jungle – three protein bars making their way to supermarket shelves – have one thing in common: crickets. All three include cricket flour, which is touted by their manufacturers as an environmentally friendly alternative to milk or soy protein.
Insects offer a complete protein and a rich source of vitamins, minerals, fat and fiber, and they require less space and water to grow than traditional livestock, such as cows and chickens. They also produceless ammonia and fewer greenhouse gases and can feed on a variety of organic matter, including food waste."
Walk into your average supermarket or convenience store and you’re never more than a few paces away from the food-to-go section. An area of refrigerator cabinets, drinks and snacks from which we are entrusted with the responsibility of constructing something that might pass for a lunch. Here we are presented with familiar options like sandwiches, pasta salads, fruit or vegetable snack portions, crisps, popcorn, confectionary bars as well as the odd healthier or low calorie option.
Ana C. Day's insight:
Solving todays food challenges
"From a narrow, short-term perspective the priorities for many are taste, price and convenience. In solving this problem the global food industry has been very successful indeed, working like a well oiled machine to deliver decent tasting, low-cost food to a local store or even your front door. However if look at our current global food strategy from a wider, long-term perspective then not only is it failing but it is in fact creating problems of its own. Our dependance on meat and animal protein is the ....."
Consumers may not be ready to eat bugs, as many do in Southeast Asia, which is why some people are pushing ground-up crickets as the next big protein.
Ana C. Day's insight:
"A few startup companies, like Exo and Chapul, buy cricket powder wholesale from Dossey, and then put it into nutrition bars. The company Six Foods uses it for their cricket chips, which they call “chirps.” Another company, San Francisco-based Bitty Foods, sells cricket flour for baking, and their cookies with cricket flour sell in all 50 states and in over 30 countries.
“We actually think it’s really important to use crickets in a ground format to introduce it to the Western market, simply because there is no visual barrier to overcome. You know, the use of whole insects, while we think it’s delicious, is not quite as palatable for people, which is why we roast them and then grind them. It’s very similar to making coffee,” said Leslie Ziegler, co-founder of Bitty Foods."
Thanks to the generous sponsorship of Next Millennium Farms our 3rd EntoCall will feature Dr. Arnold van Huis of Wageningen University. Dr. Van Huis will be discussing:
Research needs to advance the sector of insects as food and feed
Van Huis researches and advocates entomophagy and coordinates the research program “Sustainable production of Insect Proteins for human consumption,” investigating the nutritive and environmental aspects of entomophagy.
Van Huis has published over 194 papers and in 2014, van Huis co-authored The Insect Cookbook: Food for a Sustainable Planet (Arts and Traditions of the Table: Perspectives on Culinary History).
University teams will be competing in the 2015 VT KnowledgeWorks Global Student Entrepreneurship Challenge during the VT KnowledgeWorks Global Partnership Week in Blacksburg and Roanoke, Virginia, USA, August 16-22, 2015. VT KnowledgeWorks Global Student Entrepreneurship Challenge Showcase of Teams Zurich University of Applied Sciences, Institute of Food and Beverage Innovation - Zurich, Switzerland Business concept and…
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