Sunday, February 23, 2014

Would You Eat Insects for Protein?

I started a new book called "Edible." by Daniella Martin.  It's a pretty fascinating look at the world of eating insects.  I always enjoyed Entymolgy in college and the idea of eating insects isn't that foreign across the world.   The book paints a pretty poignant picture of how much it takes in terms of resources to create one pound of beef, one pound of pork and one pound of chicken.  It then shows how much it takes to create one pound of insects.   As an example one pound of beef needs 10
pounds of feed, 1000 gallons of water, 200 square ft of pasture.  A pound of insects needs 2 pounds of feed, 1 gallon of water and 2 cubic feet of land space.  Quite the difference.

There is dramatically less natural resources and environmental damage when compared.   Her numbers were based off big agrofarms, but even environmentally friendly grass fed animals have a much higher cost ratio then insects as well.

Insects are the larges biomass on earth.   So of all animals, insects are most of them.  Unlike other animals like chickens for instance, that are inhumanely kept in large dark spaces, one on top of the other, insects thrive on close quarter dark spaces.  They can grow and eat almost anything.  Vertical growing in cities is a possibility.  7 billion people on this planet.  1 out of 7 is consuming less calories then they should be.  The book estimates that by 2050 the population to potentially be 9 billion.  More people, more food, more resources consumed.

The author doesn't state at all to get rid of current protein sources, only to consider the growing potential of introducing a new one.  Very entertaining read so far.

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