Green Guru: Eating Bugs Insects are an eco-friendly meat alternative. By Susan Cosier Published: July-August 2012 Are there environmental or health benefits to eating bugs? Andy Greenberg, Brooklyn, NY Wriggling larvae and jumping crickets--baked or pan-fried--are the key to our survival, some entomologists actually argue. From an environmental perspective, it's clear why we should be consuming bugs, says Marcel Dicke, a Dutch entomologist who has been studying the benefits of eating insects--a practice called entomophagy--for the past 15 years. The earth's human population will swell from seven billion to nine billion by 2050. Some adventurous entrepreneurs are trying to popularize insect-based foodstuffs. Send recipes or other questions to firstname.lastname@example.org. Recipes from David George Gordon, bug chef and author of Eat-A-Bug Cookbook Sheesh! Yield: Six servings Ingredients 1/2 cup lemon juice 1 tablespoon olive oil 1 teaspoon honey 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated ginger 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard 1/4 teaspoon salt
Entomophagy Entomophagy (/ˌɛntəˈmɒfədʒi/, from Greek ἔντομον éntomon, "insect", and φᾰγεῖν phagein, "to eat") is the human use of insects as food. The eggs, larvae, pupae, and adults of certain insects have been eaten by humans from prehistoric times to the present day. Human insect-eating is common to cultures in most parts of the world, including North, Central, and South America; and Africa, Asia, Australia, and New Zealand. Over 1,000 species of insects are known to be eaten in 80% of the world's nations. The total number of ethnic groups recorded to practice entomophagy is around 3,000. However, in some societies insect-eating is uncommon or even taboo. Today insect eating is rare in the developed world, but insects remain a popular food in many regions of Latin America, Africa, Asia, and Oceania. Definition Mealworms presented in a bowl for human consumption In non-humans History Uses Traditional cultures Western culture Crickets
For Most People, Eating Bugs Is Only Natural In Ghana during the spring rains, winged termites are collected and fried, roasted, or made into bread. In South Africa the insects are eaten with cornmeal porridge. In China beekeepers are considered virile, because they regularly eat larvae from their beehives. Gourmands in Japan savor aquatic fly larvae sautéed in sugar and soy sauce. Grubs are savored in New Guinea and aboriginal Australia. Cultural Choices But despite its long tradition—and current favor among at least half of the world's peoples—eating insects is still rare, not to mention taboo, in the United States and Europe. One reason, DeFoliart said, is that after Europe became agrarian, insects were seen as destroyers of crops rather than a source of food. "We became invested in livestock, and bugs became the enemy," said David George Gordon, a biologist and the author of The Eat-a-Bug Cookbook. "Eco Protein" Hamburger, for example, is roughly 18 percent protein and 18 percent fat. For more insect news, scroll down.
Infographic: Why Insects Are the Most Eco-Friendly Meat - Daniel Fromson The September issue of The Atlantic is live—and with it my piece on how the Netherlands is hoping to convince the world to eat mealworms and locusts. Entomophagy, as insect-eating is officially known, is actually being taken seriously these days by a hardcore group of enthusiasts and scientists around the world (coincidentally, The New Yorker also published an article on the phenomenon this week, although it focused more on fancy insect gastronomy in the U.S., as opposed to the processed insect-containing snacks invented by the Dutch). What's causing the bug boom? One big reason: as this infographic shows, insects are far more environmentally friendly than conventional meat, an advantage advocates love to flaunt. Enjoy ... and then decide whether you'll enjoy some grasshoppers. Image: Food Service Warehouse
A Kit To Grow Bugs At Home, To Eat! As the population grows, so, too, will its hunger for meat. By 2050, meat production will need to surge by 50% to quell demand. The only problem is, producing so much (red) meat is already an environmental nightmare. And we simply might not have the resources to scale. Meanwhile, Katharina Unger is planning to invite her friends over to an insect barbecue. “Black soldier flies themselves do not eat, they just drink. Over their eight-day lifecycle, soldier flies need space to fly around, mate, and lay eggs. “There they feed on biowaste or whatever you feed them on and wriggle around for around 14 days,” Unger explains. From here, it’s bon appetit. “With my design I am proposing a new lifestyle,” she says. Read more here. [Hat tip: Tuvie]
Insect farming Insect farming in summary the practice of raising insects for agricultural purposes. It can either be used to fight invasive species, to create industrial products such as petroleum or to grow inexpensive and environmentally sustainable food for humans or animals. Rationale Overview Insects offer a highly economical, sustainable solution to existing and looming issues with the production and distribution of high quality protein to help meet growing demands as the world population grows and increases its protein consumption. Benefits Reduced feed Typical cattle requires roughly 8 pounds of feed to produce a single pound of beef. Nutrient efficiency Many bugs are more efficient in the amount of nutrients they contain compared to other unhealthy substances and calories. Greenhouse emissions The raising of typical livestock causes almost 20% of all the greenhouse gases created. Land usage Farming of popular insects Crickets 
How to Farm Insects at Home Hotlix is known primarily for its lollipops and other candy containing scorpions, crickets, or worms — the type of novelty treats you’d find in a gift shop on a pier. Though the products might seem a bit silly, the company is quite serious about its insects. “We process them here, to make sure nothing like bacteria gets on them,” says Hotlix owner Larry Peterman. He also manages the farming of the live animals. “We make sure ours are raised well. Though Peterman has always used this careful methodology with his food products, it’s only in the past month or so that restaurants and other food companies around the world have been coming to Peterman for advice and orders: the tiny Grover Beach, California company’s latest shipment of non-candied insects was sent to England. This increase in interest is tied directly to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations’ 2013 report focusing on edible insects. “One female cricket lays about 100 eggs in her 4-month lifespan.