Eating insects is perfectly normal in many parts of the world. However, if you live somewhere where it’s not the norm, it can be tricky. Edible insects are super healthy to eat and many believe that they are the future source of protein. This doesn’t mean that you can just go outside and begin eating bugs off the ground. You have to buy insects that were raised specifically for human consumption.
Why are edible insects gaining popularity?
Insects are nutritionally superior to many other forms of protein. They are also a lot more sustainable. They require very few resources to grow and a lot less water and food compared to livestock. They multiply in incredible numbers making it easy to raise many insects in a short amount of time. They also take up way less space, so a regular cow farm could grow trillions if not more insects on the same land. You can read more about this here.
Also, people around the world have been eating insects for centuries. So if you’re just hearing about it, you just happen to live in a different culture. But many Asian, South American and African countries eat insects regularly and have been doing so for ages.
Why is it so expensive?
If you live in the West like me, you’ll notice that eating insects isn’t cheap. Why is something so widely available so expensive? Supply vs. demand. There are many laws around what is and isn’t considered food. This prevents everyone from having and selling insects. The EU particularly struggles with this because having insects in a restaurant is considered a health code violation for obvious reasons. There need to be new laws differentiating the invading cockroaches from the gourmet cockroaches for this to change.
The companies that take on selling edible insects need to jump through a lot of hoops and manage to actually make money to stay in business. This means that prices need to be higher until everyone and their mother is shopping for those crunchy bugs. This is why I love to support these companies even when they are out of my price range. You can’t compare the cost of a bag of Lays chips to a bag of fried crickets due to the demand for the mass-produced chips.
Where to Buy Edible Insects?
You can buy edible insects all over the world. Take a look at the map below to find a place near you! Also, a lot of online sellers will ship worldwide, so make sure to check those out too!