There’s a lot of talk about the future of food and the future of farming. In particular, people are growing more and more aware of the need to find more sustainable food production methods, and ways of farming that have less of a negative impact on the environment.
One start-up launching in Australia thinks it may have the answer, but might just have some trouble convincing the rest of the population.
ABC News reported that Western Australian farm Grubs Up has just recently been given the go ahead to sell its produce for human consumption, which might not seem like a big deal, until you realise what it is they farm (hint: it isn’t cows).
Grubs Up is in fact WA’s first edible cricket farm – yes, you read that right.
It turns out crickets are a rich source of protein, and owner Paula Pownall hopes that in the future, people will be more open to consuming the hopping critters. Currently, she grinds them down into a protein powder for fitness fanatics, and says that the quality is incomparable to protein powders currently on the market.
“Most proteins on the market are actually only 30 per cent, cricket powder is actually 69 per cent protein,” she said.
“And not only that it’s full of amino acids, folate and really high in vitamin B12.”
It isn’t only the potential health benefits of crickets that have drawn Pownall in though, it’s the sustainability of the practice.
“We go from hatching to harvest within six to eight weeks and within that time we have pretty much a zero waste system,” she said.
“So we use recycled food waste, fruit and vegetable scraps and within that six to eight weeks we also turn their manure into fertiliser.”
Surprisingly, while the farm is a first for the state, it isn’t a first for Australia, with a Sydney edible cricket farm already in operation.