Why eat insects?
Nutritional, culinary, and environmental benefits of eating insects has been well emphasized by the media, academia, and the edible insect industrial complex. Though these reasons are profound, they are just a part of a broader societal context. There is also a critical cultural component of entomophagy that is often overlooked. Western food attitudes have a much broader global impact than we would like to acknowledge. To nearly all reaches of the globe, we’ve spread fast food and an associated demand for large livestock like a virus.
Are hamburgers evil?
No, they’re delicious, but loaded with unintended consequences. In our increasingly interconnected world, Western culture is edging out local traditions, foods, and identities. Traditional entomophagy practices are yet another unfortunate casualty of globalization.
Africa, Pacific Islands, Asia, Australia … most of the ‘rest of the world’ has a long standing rich tradition of eating insects and arachnids. Young leaders from developing nations educated in modern schools often return to home with a new-found aversion to edible insects. Under Western influence, young people from villages that traditionally celebrated edible insects are now abstaining from the practice that they now perceive to be primitive. Worse yet, harvest of insects in resource-poor regions may be doubly threatened by an increase in agricultural pesticide use. Many fields that were once ripe grasshopper picking grounds are now so toxic with pesticides that insect collection is no longer allowed. Why eat insects …
Western agricultural practices and products challenge global entomophagy practices that provide both sustainable protein and a source of micro economic development. Rearing insects can provide much needed jobs and revenue streams to local economies. Such micro-ento-economies boast a low barrier to entry as they require little to no specialized technology or heavy infrastructure. Since the UN Food and Agriculture Organization‘s first rally cry for entomophagy advocacy , multiple organizations have assembled to answer this call like mightI, Aspire, Bugs for Life, and All Things Bugs.
What may be Lost:
What can you do?
If you’ve never tried an insect, what on earth are you waiting for? Its not 2004, trying edible insects no longer involves a trip to Petco. There are multiple suppliers of food-grade edible insects in the US growing and producing an increasing variety of edible insect options. Check out our list of edible insect product reviews to see whats available. Promoting entomophagy doesnt stop with dessert, its just as important to share your edible adventures with the world. Eat AND Tweet your bugs: join this edible insect revolution, when skeptical friends ask, why eat bugs, tell them insects are:
- Environmentally Sustainable
- TRENDING … #EdibleInsects #entomophagy
For further reading check out these great cultural entomophagy resources:
#EdibleInsects #entomophagy #EdibleInsects #entomophagy #EdibleInsects #entomophagy