New Research on Small-Scale Cricket Farming in Laos

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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Are we Showboating Edible Insects?

Are we Showboating Edible Insects?

There’s nothing I love more than discussing emerging issues with members of the ento community. A few weeks ago, I received a slightly critical comment to my blog post on The Last Man on Earth: Crickets and the Media.

A man named Gregory wrote:

“We want people to embrace eating insects, but apparently it is too irresistible to showboat.

Just look at your own website. Pictures of sticking an entire critter in your mouth are meant to evoke emotion. Imagine the beef industry highlighting pictures of folks biting bloody hunks out of a walking calf.

Folks need to learn to just say no to showcasing these images. I just read an article in which the camera crew bet the child of the interviewed family $5 to eat a live bug on camera. They should have declined.

Media knows how to excite their audience, which isn’t the best for a fledgling industry.”

Ouch. Well… that was my immediate reaction. I think anyone being called out for perpetuating the show-boating of an industry trying to make a place for itself on grocery store shelves would feel a little embarrassed about this sort of comment. It really got me thinking – how does my OWN blog reflect my values and beliefs about how entomophagy should be presented and marketed to the world. Heck, what ARE my beliefs about this matter?

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Jurassic Snacks: Taking Insects to the Fitness Industry

Jurassic Snacks: Taking Insects to the Fitness Industry

The fitness market is huge – and growing. In September 2014, Globe Newswire reported that the global sports nutrition market was valued at USD 20.7 billion in 2012 and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 9.0% from 2013 to 2019, to reach an estimated value of USD 37.7 billion in 2019.

“Increasing health awareness, healthy lifestyle, rising number of health clubs and fitness centers and changing consumer clusters for nutritional product across the globe are the key growth drivers for the global sports nutrition market. Traditionally, bodybuilders and sportspersons are the major consumers for sports nutrition products. However in recent years, new user groups (recreational and lifestyle users) have increased their market share in sports nutrition market. The market for sports nutrition is expanding from its major markets (North America) towards developing markets of Europe and Asia Pacific owing to ever-increasing population, rising income and rising living standard of consumers in these region. Countries such as India and China with their fast pace economic growth offer huge opportunities for sports nutrition market in the future. Moreover, surge in national and international sporting events and increased global participation in these; provide a good launch pad for the sports nutritional products. ”

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Cricket Tacos Recipe

Cricket Tacos Recipe

There’s nothing like a deliciously cooked taco. The warm tortillas, the crisp lettuce, the perfectly-melted cheese, and the main ingredient: crickets. Today I want to share with you one of my favorite spins on a classic taco – the cricket taco. Not only is it healthier (crickets are a more sustainable and more nutritious protein addition than beef) but it also tastes ahhhh-mazing! It can be intimidating for newbies to cook with insects, but once you learn to treat them like any other ingredient, you’re golden!

Cricket Taco
Enjoying a cricket taco!

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Reinventing Entomophagy for the 21st Century

Reinventing Entomophagy for the 21st Century

I don’t know about you, but it makes me thrilled when I read about entomophagy more and more in popular media sites. The Huffington Post released an article today about reinventing entomophagy for the 21st century, and I couldn’t agree more.

“‘Entomophagy is an evolving term in need of review,” says Afton Marina Szasz Halloran, Ph.D Fellow at the University of Copenhagen. Halloran calls for a change in the way we speak about edible insects and entomophagy.”

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MIGHTi – Insects to Impact Food Insecurity

MIGHTi – Insects to Impact Food Insecurity

Prepare to be inspired! I’m over the moon about the recent chat I had with one of the wonder-women who founded MIGHTi – a collaborative research project designed to address the multifaceted and systematic factors that contribute to food insecurity in Southern Africa while simultaneously joining a global effort to re-envision food systems in a changing climate.

Needless to say, Rachel is making an impact in food sustainability and had some great stories to share about it!

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Tiny Farms on Regulations, Barriers to Entry, and the Technical Side of Insect Farming

Tiny Farms on Regulations, Barriers to Entry, and the Technical Side of Insect Farming

After being virtually introduced by a distant mutual friend, Jena and I hit it off quickly. Owner and brains behind Tiny Farms, Jena was witty, driven, and a joy to speak with. Tiny Farms is a San Francisco based startup working on pioneering smart, scalable insect farming. We hopped on a call to discuss data, crickets, and regulations… to name a few topics. I’ll jump ahead in the story to say I ended the call with a smile on my face, knowing that we have people like Jena working hard on “smart farming” for our future.

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The Last Man on Earth: Crickets and the Media

The Last Man on Earth: Crickets and the Media

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?

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3,000 Feet of Bugs: Why Meghan Curry will summit El Capitan eating only bugs!

3,000 Feet of Bugs: Why Meghan Curry will summit El Capitan eating only bugs!

What do you get when you cross a 3,000 ft summit, a daring adventurer, and a mission to change the world? Potentially a great summer thriller film. But in our case, we have Bug Wall – Meghan Curry’s 2 week edible insect-powered ascent of El Capitan.

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Coalo Valley Farms: The Open Source Farm

Coalo Valley Farms: The Open Source Farm

I called to talk about crickets, but ended up with plenty to think about regarding company culture, the future of innovation, serendipity, and even artificial intelligence! Coalo Valley Farms has a lot going for it, especially strong leadership.

A little more about Coalo Valley Farms: Coalo Valley Farms is an urban cricket farm focused on the production of alternative protein through sustainable means. Coalo Valley Farms serves both businesses and private clients who are interested in eating healthier and/or reducing their environmental footprint. Established in 2014, the Coalo Valley Farms operates in San Fernando Valley out of a single farm that is modified for the organic and cruelty-free production and processing of premium cricket-based protein powder. Coalo Valley Farms focuses on giving consumers an alternative option when they choose how to ingest their protein. Cricket-based protein offers a healthier and more environmentally friendly solution to protein from traditional livestock such as cows, pigs, and chickens.

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