Care for some Crickets?

No I’m not talking about the game although I’m sure those cricketers have smashed a few in their time.

The next sustainable and scalable food source of protein. The flying pesky insects than can devastate farm crops in one go, like locusts. Well farmers can get their revenge.

Crickets have a naturally short life span, 6 – 8 weeks depending on the species, so we don’t have to terminate a potentially long lifespan, and they breed very quickly.

Yep they love sex, full on breeders this lot, they don’t need any encouragement.
The only problem seems to be that they can have a tendency for cannibalism, turns out they’re lovers and fighters.
If they eat their own kind, then they won’t object to us eating them after they’re dead.

This concept and practice of consuming insects, is not new to most Asian countries where they have traditionally been caught in the wild, but it is often recieved with trepidation in the western world.

But tastes change, in the 1970’s many western countries wouldn’t eat raw fish.
In the 1990’s Japanese sushi & sashimi became trendy. Today, it is one of the most popular menu dishes. I must say that it tastes even better in Japan, maybe because you get the cultural experience as well.
In the 1800’s, lobsters and shellfish weren’t considered delicacies, yet today chefs have made them a high priced menu item, like lobster mornay and garlic prawns .

Insects outnumber humans 200 million to 1 on earth, with 1462 edible insect species.

Danielle Martin is a foodie and insect lover. Below inset, is an excerpt from her blog “Girl Meets Bug”

Rules about eating insects.

“Black, green and brown, swallow it down. Red, blue and yellow, leave that fellow”

Avoid insects with flamboyant colors as they are openly saying they’re not palatable to the rest of nature. As for taste, Danielle considers bee larvae to taste like bacon and mushrooms,while crickets are a cross between almonds and shrimp.

Read more at – Girl Meets Bug Blog – Danielle Martin

Only 8 litres of water is used to produce 1 kg of crickets, compared to 15000 litres of water to produce 1kg beef.

Invertebrates – crickets, silkworms and meal worms are suitable for human and animal consumption.

Grasshoppers, locusts, crickets have lower cholesterol levels than beef and pork and are rich in protein. Farming crickets is cost efficient, eco-friendly and non toxic. Cricket flour is gluten free and it’s market was valued in 2017 as 19.5 million and is expected to increase.

Get over the gross factor.

There are many organizations moving forward with cricket protein powder and flour, while others are farming crickets. In Thailand alone it is a multi million dollar industry, exporting wholesale to Europe, America and the UK. In Cambodia crickets are so popular that they often experience shortages, but they also eat Tarantulas and Mopane worms.

– Read more at The Hindu

Caterpillars are also rich in proteins, minerals and vitamins. The Mopane Caterpillar/worm improves iron deficiency and is 61% protein. They are sustainable as they feed on tree leaves and contribute to the forest ecosystem.

Modular cricket farms, in times of crisis.

Terreform ( non-profit architecture and design group) took a different approach by designing, farming modules so people can farm the crickets. They were designed to provide a fresh source of protein in times of crisis after a big calamity in a region, as they are small modular containers and easily transported. However they are also being used as everyday sustainable alternatives to meat.

“Terreform ONE is a unique laboratory for scientists, artists, architects, students, and individuals of all backgrounds to explore and advance the larger framework of green design.”

Terraform1 – Youtube

The video below gives an overview of intersecting factors which designers and creatives need to plan for with a multidisciplinary approach, to solve problems.

“Joachim believes it’s up to the designers of today to make products that are not only beautiful, but practical and sustainable. He says it might take a crisis to spark change…but will it?”

Hmm…… Earth first and then Terraform Mars, maybe? by Heidi M

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