Meet the Man Making Beer Salt Out of Crickets

“It’s a seasoning blend made with roasted ground cricket, sea salt and spices. Made by none other than myself. It works really well as a beer salt.” – Mark Nagy. 

Mark – my man – you’ve truly outdone yourself! After my interview with with the Cadesky brothers about their mouth-watering bolognese sauce, I’ve been obsessed with products out there that normalize insects as ingredients. What better way to bring edible insects to the masses than in the trojan horses of foods we already know and love?  …On second thought, trojan horses may be a bad comparison. These foods are not hiding their special ingredient – Nagy’s product is called Sal de CRICKET for goodness sake – but they are certainly changing the way we think about insects and food.

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Collaboration is Key For Future of Edible Insect Regulations

Class is in session!

The rustling of eager students settling into their seats softened as the lights in the auditorium dimmed. “Let’s set the stage to discuss the U.S. regulation of insect-derived foods,” began Ricardo Carvajal, director at Hyman, Phelps & McNamara. He was about to take us on a journey touching on what is known on the past, current, and possible future of regulatory facts that matter for those of us interested in entomophagy.

It felt like I was in university again… how I wish I could have taken classes about THIS!

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We’re Playing Hide & Seek With Insects

So… we have this weird proclivity to refer to food as “grub,” but get turned off by the thought of eating a grub. Ironic much?

As the cost of animal protein continues to rise and food and feed insecurity becomes more problematic, we need to get serious about addressing our food choices.

Thankfully, most of the world is already eating insects. From Mexico to Asia, two billion people eat a regular diet of insects. In Western cultures, at least it seems to be a growing trend from groups of people as diverse as bodybuilders and environmentalists.

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Insects as Ingredients: One Hop Kitchen Revolutionizes Bolognese Sauce

Big. Bold. Beautiful. Saucy.

I could easily be describing your dream girl. Or I could be lauding the incredible flavor profile of my new favorite bolognese sauces. One Hop Kitchen has created the world’s first best, and only insect based bolognese sauce using crickets and mealworms.

As they tout on their website, their sauces have big bolognese flavor with a tiny environmental footprint. Replacing beef with insect protein makes a huge difference. One jar of One Hop Kitchen’s bolognese saves 1900 L of water compared to beef (that’s 18 bathtubs). Livestock rearing is responsible for 18% of green house gas emissions – anything we can do to lower our reliance on livestock is a step in the right direction. Ok we know that eating insects is good for our health, and that of the environment, but what makes One Hop Kitchen so special?

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New Research on Small-Scale Cricket Farming in Laos

Few things perk me up in the morning like receiving an email titled, “New Research on Cricket Farming – Thought You’d Be Interested.” Any contribution to the growing literature on entomophagy is a welcome gift! Last week I received such a message and dove into a great piece called Small-Scale Cricket Farming by Thomas Weigel of Veterinarians Without Borders.

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Announcing the First Edible Insect Trade Association

AUSTIN, TX (May 16, 2016) – Little Herds, an edible insect nonprofit, based in Austin, Texas, is proud to announce the formation and meeting of the U.S’s first edible insect trade organization, North American Edible Insects Coalition, NAEIC. “We are excited that the NAEIC will be meeting for the first time at Eating Insects Detroit, at the U.S.’s first edible insect conference, held at Wayne State University in Detroit, May 26-28″ stated Robert Nathan Allen, Founder of Little Herds.

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Researching Insects for Malnutrition: Where Will Entomophagy Have the Biggest Impact?

I love when someone rocks my world with a new point of view, it’s a good day. A great day. Darja Dobermann provided that when she suggested we might be focusing our marketing efforts of entomophagy in the wrong areas. Well, not the wrong areas… but not the most effective ones. We already have countries that culturally accept eating insects (that also have climates to support their sustainable breeding). So why are we trying to force insects on other markets before optimizing those?

Darja is doing incredible work examining the potential for entomophagy in undernutrition, specifically anemia and uses in aquaculture in Africa. In our interview we dig a little deeper into work that will change the world.

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