Cricket Pizza? Mealworm Salad? Will Eating Insects Ever Become a Norm in Western Culture?

 

Image via Passport

Image via Passport

A recent column in The Guardian‘s Ask Leo&Lucy section asks the question: “Will eating insects ever be mainstream?” The answer is, not anytime soon, but things are changing. While nearly 2 billion people around the world currently consume insects daily, Western culture’s ick-factor psyche has prevented us from expanding this feasible food alternative.  In fact, the idea of consuming bugs has been around for quite sometime as Vincent Holy in 1885 proposed the idea in a pamphlet “Why not eat insects?” But the closest we’ve come to cooking Arthropoda is in the form of a Creepy Crawler oven. But things are slowly beginning to change, “Insects are even a novelty on the UK food scene. They’re mainly found as subversive garnishes for salads or cocktails, or on the menus of experimental pop-up restaurants. One start-up company (eat-ento.co.uk) is focusing on the aesthetic issue, however, and hopes to remove our psychological barrier to insect-eating by transforming the flesh of edible creepy crawlies into anodyne cubes.” There are also signs that the industry is growing right here in the US. An edible cricket farm has popped-up in Ohio and various Kickstarters are hoping to get cricket snacks to your front door.

There is no doubt, though, that eating insects is not only good for you, but it’s also environmentally more sustainable than eating livestock, but are these reasons enough to change the Western psyche.

 

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