Co-authored by: Mackenzie Wade
Author Maija Palmer shared a thoughtful piece on Sifted exploring whether edible insects are “tasty and cheap enough” to go mainstream. Titled “Bug Bites: Are Insects the New Sushi?”, the piece raises some common questions about the future of the space. I wanted to take a moment to comment briefly on some of the critiques brought up in the piece:
““Urgh. I can’t. I’d have to close my eyes,” says a woman inching backwards from bowl of pasta topped with mealworms.”
The article puts a strong emphasis on the ‘yuck factor.’ As an industry, we are trying to redirect the narrative towards a ‘wow factor.’ As with sushi, lobster, and even tomatoes in the past, one of the biggest challenges faced by the entomophagy industry is overcoming what some call the “ick factor” or “yuck factor.” This refers to the current stigma around bugs – the reputation they have for being scary or unclean.
Continue reading “Bug Bites – Are Insects the New Sushi? (Response)”
Eating Insects Athens was [insert superlatives here] beautiful. Thank you to everyone who participated in Eating Insects Athens, and to those of you that couldn’t make it but have been a part of my bug family still. I hope you enjoy this little blog post. If you don’t feel like reading, you can check out my recap video here:
Continue reading “Eating Insects Athens 2018 – A Recap of Industry Growth”
Influencer marketing. You see it all the time – the Instagram models with #ad in their caption, pushing the cute jeans they’re wearing or the blue gummy hair vitamins. If you’re unfamiliar with this trend, you need to crawl out from under your rock, hop on any of the major social media platforms, and take a gander at the advertising age of branded content. It makes sense – YouTube or Instagram influencers have a lot of market power, as they are more relatable than traditional celebrities and have very loyal fan bases. And, most importantly, many reach most brand’s ideal market: the elusive millennial.
Why Influencers and Content Creators Matter (Even to Bug Companies)
These influencers are, well, quite influential. And it’s not just products they are promoting – it’s a restaurant, an experience, a vacation destination, a way of living, and more. I’m particularly interested in the trend of influencers promoting ideas. Sometimes they start trends, and other times they are the spark that catalyzes a movement into the limelight. Whereas we are accustomed to tuning out traditional advertising, influencer campaigns have not just the “views” or “impressions” required to make an impact, but they also command the genuine attention of their fans.
Continue reading “How to Promote Food Brands with Influencers”
Ken Navarro, creator of Rule of Yum, did not hesitate when he received the strange offer. “Want to come to a wine & cheese pairing? Well, minus the cheese. With bugs instead.”
Continue reading “A Chef’s Take on Wine and Bugs”
It’s with a happy heart and an older soul that I write this particular post. It’s a post of gratitude to my friends and family who gathered around last weekend for some birthday festivities. I asked them not to come bearing gifts, but an open mind instead.
I asked them to try crickets with me for the first time.
Continue reading “How to Get People to Try Insects for the First Time: A Tale of Birthday Bugs”
Cricket casserole… I thought it would be at least another few years before I saw dishes like that making appearances in popular shows like The Last Man on Earth (a Fox Comedy). But, alas, the episode aptly named “Crickets” (S2, Ep5) aired on October 25th. What went down?
Continue reading “The Last Man on Earth: Crickets and the Media”
A bit ago the news was been abuzz with Shailene Woodley’s behind-the-scenes video (accompanying her new cover of Nylon magazine) where she predicted that the future of food is insects. She said, “I’ve eaten ants…and June bugs.” It seems that celebrities are getting in on the insect-eating fun.
The other day I came across an Instagram post via Katy Perry where she wrote, “Just celebrating a run of 141 shows with a fun scorpion snack in Bangkok!” … yes, Katy, yes!
Continue reading “Celebs, Insects, and Juicing – The Start of a Trend?”