I saw an online poll the other day that got me thinking. It asked vegetarians whether or not they would eat insect protein. I considered that a pretty interesting question. While I am not a vegetarian, I know what it is to be one and even have a strict vegan or two in my circle of acquaintances. The question to them would produce pretty much the same single word answer: No!
But the whole concept is what has me more intrigued than anything else. I know the argument from vegans/vegetarians is a good one. In general terms, if you view a cricket as an animal, and you have chosen to not eat anything animal-related in your diet, then clearly you would not dine on edible insects. I would not even attempt to sway that position one way or the other.
However, when that insect protein, and we’ll use crickets as our example, is in the form of flour, does that change things at all? For those who are still new to insect protein one form you can get it is in flour. Crickets are ground up and mixed into flour at either a 20-percent or 30-percent ratio of crickets to flour. The flour is then used for various food items.
I can see where some vegans and vegetarians may take a slightly different look at insect protein when it is in the flour form. Those who have chosen to stop eating animal products simply because of environmental or possible sustainability concerns may want to look at crickets a little closer. Crickets use 10-percent of the water required to produce the same weight of beef.
Crickets also require 1/16 of the feed required for the same amount of beef (pound for pound). On top of that, crickets do not produce methane as cattle do and they have a diet that is not exclusively the same one that humans use. With that being said, why is there no huge vegan/vegetarian groups supporting the move to insect protein?
That’s because the non-meat eaters are getting all the protein and nutrients they require through a plant-based diet. So really, there is no pressing need to explore options as long as plants continue to grow and produce the requirements of the vegan/vegetarian community. While I expected the argument to be far more controversial, I do see the logic from both sides.
I have no problem with eating cricket flour or products made with cricket flour (cricket pasta and cricket protein bars). But I am not a vegan/vegetarian, either. If you would like to know more about insect protein, check out the eBook I wrote on the topic titled, “The Foodie Guide To Farming Insects For Protein.” Download your copy today for details.
My name is George Elliott. I have been in the Media Industry since 1978. I spent 23 years in Broadcasting and worked in a total of six different radio stations located in southern British Columbia Canada during my career. In 2000 I switched gears and moved into the Print Media Industry at a small town, local weekly newspaper. In 2004 I bought the paper and operated it with my wife, Brenda until July 2016 when we closed it. I launched a freelance web content and article writing business from my home in January 2014.