Want to boost your energy with high-quality, low-fat protein? Look no further than bugs. According to panel discussions held at the 2016 Institute of Food Technologies insects are the food of the future. Not only are they good for you, they’re a low-cost alternative to animal protein with far less impact on the environment. If this sounds ridiculously futuristic, think again; cricket-based protein powders are already hitting the market here in the U.S. Some insects are as much as 80% protein by weight and provide more essential amino acids than most animal proteins. Along with being rich in nutrients like omega-3 fatty acids, Insect protein is easily digested. So Why Insects? because as time goes on there’s just not going to be enough meat to go around. Consider these startling stats:
70 million: The number of people added to the planet’s population every year
9 billion: The world population by 2050 as projected by current population growth rates
70 percent: The percentage of agricultural land devoted to livestock production
30 percent: The percentage of all the world’s land used to raise livestock
These problems could be alleviated by cultivating high protein Insect groups. Insects require less feed, less water, less land, and less energy to
produce and their production generates substantially lower environmental pollutants, such as pesticides and greenhouse gases
More than 1400 type of bugs are edible, say dutch researchers at Wageningen University, who compiled a more than 50-page list for the 2014 International Conference on Insects to Feed the World held in May. Amongst them are grasshoppers, locusts, crickets, moths, beetles, flies, bees, ants, cicadas, katydids, weevils, stink bugs and cockroaches.
Because of the deleterious effect animal agriculture has on the water supply and other natural reserves, new food sources must be considered. The practice of growing and consuming animals for protein is not sustainable. So what’s the alternative? Insects.
insects are extremely nutritious and, in some cases, more nutritious than animal protein sources. The protein powder/flour produced from insects has good shelf life and low moisture activity, . More notably, food safety issues inherent to animal protein—E. coli, Listeria, Salmonella, etc.—have not been a factor with insects. Insect-based ingredients are also versatile: insect flour can be incorporated into almost anything.