An Israeli company has begun to add artificial flavouring to insects, supposedly as a nutritious alternative to meat products, all in an effort to save the climate.
Israeli firm Hargol FoodTech has released small brown protein-rich gummy sweets made from locusts, which are related to grasshoppers.
Company CEO Dror Tamir told the BBC that “Grasshoppers taste like pecans, mushrooms, coffee and chocolate.
“But with our range of food we can add in different flavours…the gummies come in orange and strawberry flavour.”
The edible insects coming to a supermarket near you 🦗https://t.co/y3aCAGgjuj
— BBC News (World) (@BBCWorld) September 23, 2021
The company farms up to 400 million locusts per year at a solar-powered facility in Israel, and promotes locust farming as a “green” alternative to beef production. They say farming locusts produces 99% less emissions than cows, adding that they are both kosher and halal, and thus edible by both practicing Jews and Muslims.
Professor Robin May, chief scientific advisor to the UK’s Food Standards Agency weighed in on the idea, adding that ground crickets or freeze-dried mealworms could be “environmentally friendly” alternatives to meat.
“Protein is essential in our diets,” she said.
“But often some of our most protein-rich foods come with significant environmental or ethical footprints – meat or dairy products, for instance.
“Some insect proteins, such as ground crickets or freeze-dried mealworms, are cheap, easy to farm, low fat and have a lower environmental impact than meat. And sometimes they may even provide a valuable ‘recycling’ service, by consuming waste products as their primary feedstuff, so the potential advantages to society are significant.”