Are Insects the Future of Food? – Megan Miller

Organization
TEDxManhattan

Imagine your favorite baked goods, except made with cricket flour. If the idea of eating insects doesn’t appeal to you, you may want to reconsider – not only are they packed with nutrition, they’re being served at the world’s best restaurants, and perhaps most importantly, taking advantage of this untapped resource could help us avert a global food crisis. Megan Miller, creator of Bitty Foods, will convince you to start eating insects.

Publications & Reports

  • Edible Insects: Future prospects for food and food security.  Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, 2013.
    FAO published this 2013 report that explores all things related to edible insects from culture and religion all the way to economics.
  • Edible. Daniella Martin, 2014.
    Entomophagist and blogger, Martin believes that edible insects are the last great hope to save the planet.
  • Journal of Insects as Food and Feed. Wageningen Academic Publishers, 2015.
    An online journal, issued four times a year and beginning in 2015, will cover all things related to edible insects. Find subscription information, e-content and more.
  • Man Eating Bugs. Peter Menzel and Faith D’Aluisio, 1998.
    An anthropological exploration of edible insects, each chapter studies a different culture and its experience with insects.
  • Why Not Eat Insects? Vincent M Holt, 2012.
    A reproduction of a nearly 100-year-old book, this informative book was re-released in 2012.

Cookbooks

  • The Eat-a-Bug Cookbook. David George Gordon, 2013.
    40 way to cook crickets, grasshoppers, ants, waterbugs, spiders, centipedes and their kin – try out some recipes!
  • Eating Insects. Eating Insects as Food. Elliott Lang, 2013.
    After traveling in Thailand and eating insects, Elliott Lang couldn’t find a good book on eating insects, so he decided to write it himself!
  • The Insect Cookbook. Arnold van Huis, Henk van Gurp, Marcel Dicke, 2014.
    This chef and two entomologists believe insects are a sustainable protein source for humans and essential for our future diet. In addition to recipes, this cookbook features useful facts and data as well as interviews including chef René Redzepi.

Information

Discussion Questions

  • Should We Eat Bugs? Take a look at Emma Bryce’s TED-Ed Original lesson, which has over 1.4m views.
  • What are the social, environmental, health and other benefits of eating bugs?
  • Would you ever eat insects?
  • If yes, which insects would you be willing to eat? Mealworms? Crickets? Tarantulas?!
  • Why do you think eaters, especially meat-eaters, are so intimidated by eating insects?
  • What do you think can be done to get Westerners more comfortable with eating insects?

Lesson Plans

Edible Insects – Let’s Eat Bugs – PDF File Edible Schoolyards.
Lesson Plan for the video, “Are Insects the Future of Food – Megan Miller at TEDxManhattan.”
Grade Level: Grades 3-5 and Middle School

Should We Eat Bugs? Emma Bryce. TEDEd.
An additional lesson plan from Emma Bryce and TEDEd.

Lesson Plan – Insects

Insects Lesson Plan

Additional information

  • Daniella Martin, the founder of Girl Meets Bug, calls insects the eco-logical alternative. Check out her blog to learn more about nutritional info, recipes, sourcing and plenty more.
  • Entomophagy is the practice of eating insects. The article How Entomophagy Works, a self-explanatory title, explore its history, modern practices as well as its benefits.
  • The Food & Agriculture Organization of the United Nations has observed that there are 1,462 species of recorded edible insects. Check out this MSNBC segment where Insects are Food founder Marc Dennis discusses the power of eating insects. You can also browse the site for recipes and other resources.
  • General information, infographics and publications from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations

Take Action

4 Things You Can Do Learn More About Edible Insects

  1. Eat crickets! Take a look below at some companies who currently use crickets in their products.
    Aketta by Aspire
    Big Cricket Farms
    Bitty Foods
    Chapul Cricket Energy Bars
    Cricket Flours
    Don Bugito
    Exo
    Hotlix Insect Candy
    Open Bug Farm
    Thailand Unique
  2. Try a new recipe!  Make cookies using cricket flour.
  3. Make your own food!  Learn how to raise your own edible crickets or mealworms. They take up very little space and can save you loads of money.
  4. Go to Change Food’s Tumblr site to share and give us feedback on your experiences.

Organizations

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations seeks to eradicate hunger, food insecurity and malnutrition, eliminate poverty, and sustainably manage and utilize natural resources. Browse FAO’s content for publications, infographics and more.

Little Herds

Little Herds is an Austin-based non-profit works with governments, entrepreneurs, farmers, bakers, chefs and businesses to change worldviews of food and create a market for bug-eaters.