Creepy crawlies such as beetles, crickets, ants, worms… do they sound familiar to you? I know most of you know them as pests and dislike them, but have you ever thought of eating these little bugs as… food?
Yes! These little bugs can be eaten as food! In countries such as Thailand, they either eat these insects when they are still alive, or they deep-fry these insects as a delicacy. Believe it or not, these insects may be inside your everyday food or drink. For example, canned fruit juices are allowed up to 1 maggot per 250 ml, curry powder is allowed up to 100 insect fragments (head, body, legs) per 25 grams and chopped dates are allowed up to 10 whole dead insects. The list goes on and on.
Are you turning green and feeling like vomiting as you read this? Well you shouldn’t, because you’ve been consuming them for years and you’re not the slightest bit bothered about it!
These little insects are actually very nutritious and contain around the same or even more nutrients than a slice of beef or chicken could offer! I had a first-hand experience with eating one of these creepy crawlies. On Wednesday, during our Cultural Intelligence module, the teacher made us try some deep fried worms! The worm actually tasted better than I thought!
But you may ask, why eat bugs? Fact: It is up to 20 times more efficient to raise insect protein than beef. That’s per pound. This is mainly because bugs don’t ‘waste’ food energy on things like raising their body temperature, or making bones, fur, feathers, and other stuff we can’t eat. Also, insects are a great, inexpensive, green source of the protein desperately needed by starving peoples. If we can help create a market and funding for it, there is the potential to help spread nourishment throughout the planet.
Since there are so many great reasons to try these creepy crawlies, why not have a once in a lifetime experience? Maggots ,anyone?
Germaine Ong (1L)