Worms, crickets and other type of insects could might be the protein food of the future. Entrepreneurs in the United States, are growing businesses of this type and are aiming to convince more and more people that this type of food intake is less costly, uses less land and water than any other animals raised for meat.
Information released by the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation, has shown that in 2013, there were more than 2 billion people all over the planet that had insects included in their diet.
Insects consumption has been promoted by the United Nations because it has several benefits from, being environmental friendly to starting the basis for new job for people interested in the production of insects.
Serving insect foods in the western part of the world, might encounter some difficulties as people here are used to looking at insects as something disgusting, something that if you see in your plate you refuse to eat your food anymore, explained Daniella Martin, a blogger of a site specialised in eating insects.
Monica Martinez is an entrepreneur from San Francisco who is serving this kind of food and has many different recipes inspired from the Mexican traditional delicacies. Some of her famous recipes are salted crickets glazed in chocolate and spicy worms.
The whole point of this business is to invite people to taste and combine more diversified protein sources than the ones available. Their highest purpose is to transform this type of meals into something normal that is seen as something natural and people should at least try some of these foods before saying no, to them.
For starters , Martinez’s insect “restaurant” is offering free food samples for people to get the taste of it. As it was expected, there are people who have said a loud no to eating this and there were those who felt that they should at least give it a try and they have actually liked it.
In another area of San Francisco , Megan Miller is another entrepreneur who is trying to promote insects as delicious food and healthy protein sources. Her specialty cricket flour cookies, which are basically cookies containing a flour made from crickets.
They are promoting their foods as healthy snacks and a better option for parents to offer their children, as they contain less sugar than standard cookies and a double amount of proteins.
The problem with insects is that they are hard to market as something appealing to the eye and our taste buds, which is the reason why people in this business are finding ways of mixing them with classical ingredients and creating attractive packages. Insects in the form of powders added to foods, are a great way for people to start getting used to the taste before they try out the entire insect, explained Miller.
Big Cricket Farms is one of the cricket suppliers from North America and its owner, Kevin Bachhuber, had the idea of opening this business after he ate crickets in Thailand.
The company started with 8,000 pounds of crickets per month but the high demand of the market is forcing him to enlarge the production to 25,000 pounds a month. Bachhuber stated that the orders are so many and large that its hard for them to keep up and he was surprised to see how fond have grown people of eating insects. He added that their goal is to incorporate insects in our regular diet.