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Food Sustainability for Overpopulation

Food for the Future?

Mezcal+with+larvae+from+Mexico
Mezcal with larvae from Mexico

Mezcal with larvae from Mexico

(Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

Mezcal with larvae from Mexico

Lizbeth Gutierrez, Staff Writer

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The world is currently at a population of 7.4 billion people. A greater population increases food demand, Earth’s capacity to provide grazing lands and fertile soil is limited by fast growing cities and urbanization.

Entomophagy

Entomophagy, the human consumption of insects. The consumption of insects seems to be a taboo in Western culture, however the consumption of insects for nutrients and protein has been practiced in many counties for many years such as: Thailand, Ghana, Mexico, China and Brazil. Each country has adopted their own way of  of creating dishes centered around insects. For example, in Thailand, it is very popular to snack on grasshoppers, crickets and woodworms. The insects are seasoned and fried until crispy. In Ghana when food is scarce, it is very common to consume termites. The termites can be roasted, fried or even used to make bread.

(Getty Images)
Mezcal with larvae from Mexico

 

In Mexico, the larva from an agave plant called maguey is placed in mezcal, and it is one of the most popular drinks. In China, unlike the United States, it is considered a delicacy to consume larva from insects like bees and such food can be found on high-end restaurants. In Brazil, Queen ants were primarily consumed by the poor, but with the course of time, it has been largely practiced especially in southwest Brazil.

 

 

 

 

 

Consuming insects is a great way to meet the growing food demand. Unlike cattle or chickens, insects take less space and have a higher concentration of numbers as well as being able to reproduce rapidly. The benefits from eating insects and traditional food have nearly the same nutrition benefits. A serving of  crickets is usually 3-5 ounces, contains 13 grams of protein and 121 calories. The same serving of eggs (roughly about two large eggs) contains the same amount of protein and slightly more calories (154).

Give it a try. It is the food of the future!

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Food Sustainability for Overpopulation