Should Hyping Edible Bugs Focus On The Experience Instead Of The Environment?
By Berly McCoy, WWNO New Orleans Public Radio
Jan 10, 2019
Farming insects may be more sustainable than raising meat, but so far that hasn't been quite enough to convince most Westerners to eat them.
Marketing them as delicious, exquisite delicacies, though? That might do the trick.
The global demand for meat drives environmental decline, from forest depletion and soil erosion to increased water use and the release of greenhouse gases.
Insect farming is easier on the environment, says Joost Van Itterbeeck, visiting scientist at Rikkyo University in Tokyo and co-author of the book Edible Insects: Future Prospects for Food and Feed Security. And, he adds, "The nutritional benefits are very obvious in terms of proteins, minerals and vitamins."
But as nice as that all sounds, Westerners are just plain disgusted by bugs on the dinner plate. And save-the-planet discussions don't seem to be changing their minds.
Current marketing tactics for eating insects tend to point out environmental and health benefits. But a new study published in Frontiers in Nutrition suggests it might be better to focus on taste and experience, such as highlighting how much dragonflies taste like soft-shelled crabs.
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