Rebecca D. Thomas

A global impact blog, searching for innovative & forward-thinking ideas in business, design, travel, food, & fashion. Promoting a Circular Economy. Let's make learning fun!

Bug Bites: My Edible Insect Experience

Hello, friends! I am so excited about this post, because I’m writing about something I’ve never done before – My first time eating a mixed bag of…wait for it…bugs! Yes, bugs. For my insect-eating friends, this may sound silly, like, what’s the big deal?! For me and my palate, this was a comfort zone-stretching moment! Read on to see how it went, and I can’t wait to read your thoughts in the comments. But first, my interview with the amazing Aly Moore, Founder of Bugible  ðŸ˜ŠHere we go!

Aly, I know you are very busy, so thank you for your time! How did you first get involved with edible bugs?
In 2012, I was working in Mexico on a public health project. The food choices, of course, were very different from what I was accustomed to in the states! I visited a taco stand that served cow tongue, and chapulines, also known as grasshopper! I decided to try the grasshopper, and the rest is history! 

Are bugs easy to store? Whole roasted or dehydrated bugs are very shelf-stable - many don't even require refrigeration! I store bugs in mason jars on my spice rack.

For businesses wanting to grow and sell edible bugs, how would they ship the insects to their customers? First, bugs for human consumption should always be purchased from regulated farms (GRAS certified). The wet (non-dehydrated/non-roasted) insects are shipped with an ice pack and may be stored in the freezer, up to approximately two months. After thawing, they are fine for about a week.
Aly, showing us how it's done! Looks like a good read!

Some people have live bugs sent to them in air hole containers. One should leave them out on a counter top for a day or two, to rid them of fecal matter. Then, they are ready to be refrigerated. Refrigerate the live bugs first, and then you may freeze them.

If you are concerned about the ethical treatment of animals, edible bugs are a wise choice. Since crickets are cold-blooded, they can be refrigerated, and they will fall asleep. Then, you can freeze them, and they don’t wake up. That’s it! A humane practice, compared to other methods.

Where can we find you on social media? Find me on Instagram, Twitter, You Tube, and Facebook @Bugible
Bug Life, Aly Style!
I purchased my first bug bites from Seginus Farms out of Margate, Florida. I love their blog page, which features several informative charts and graphs.

For my first edible bug-venture, I decided to take a walk around the local art park, mainly to distract me from what I was about to eat. I must admit, I was nervous!
And, it started raining,

My mixed bag of bugs!

Up close and personal!

These bugs are the bees knees!

Undecided...

Verdict: Yes to the texture, they are nice and crunchy. Taste: Very different, will take some getting used to. Would be interested in exploring recipe/seasoning options. They are filling!
A couple of mentions, before I wrap this up: The Food Forever Initiative recently organized the Food Forever Experience in New York City. Chefs prepared and served unique fare, including algae, moringa, edible insects, and ulluco, a colorful root vegetable. This is a great read 😊 This event was held at Google’s NYC office – speaking of Google, William McDonough and Michael Braungart, authors of The Upcycle: Beyond Sustainability, Designing for Abundance, are working with them, and their 33,000 employees, to implement renewable energy as their working systems. I wonder what the authors think about the edible bug movement? 🐛
I also want to mention Erik Oberholtzer, co-founder of Tender Greens, who also oversees the Sustainable Life Project, an internship program for former foster youth. Let’s give Erik a big virtual hug! 
Side-by-side snack comparison. One day, I may trade in my preferred snacks of nuts, chocolate and chips for buggers and moringa seeds.

Open Wide! 
Some edible insect advocates want us to view grasshoppers as the new caviar, a delicacy. Others want to convince you that edible insects are the food of the future, and will help save the planet. Many advocates sit in both camps. What do you think? Are you ready to join the bug-volution? 😉

16 comments

  1. Quick note: If you have questions for Aly, feel free to ask them here, and her FAQ page has a wealth of information.

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  2. Great post, very interesting! I'm willing to give edible bugs a try!

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    1. Hey Leslie, great to hear from you! Yeah, I think it is worth exploring, to learn the history of edible insects in other parts of the world, and in other cultures. I think it’s worth normalizing in the United States. The edible bug movement is growing in the U.S., for sure! How is your garden?

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    2. I'm trying to grow onions,peas, and a little spinach! Here's a thought-Can you make bug butter, a spreadable form of insects? Our nut crops (peanuts, etc.) are struggling, so I wonder if this could be an alternative?

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    3. 🤔🤔🤔Good question!!

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  3. To many people including me, eating bugs kinda seems strange, mostly because we are not really aware of how it's prepared and how it's supposed to be consumed. This post really got me interested in learning more about bug eating. And I think Bugible is a good place to start. Thank you, Rebecca, for sharing this interesting post! By the way, I love your expressions in the bug eating pictures! Haha.

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    1. Hey, Jigeesha! Yeah, I love Aly’s information, and am grateful that she agreed to the interview! Bugible is interesting, and fun. Many people seem to be on the cricket flour bandwagon. This seems like a good place to start. When I ordered my bugs from Seginus Farms, they also sent me a packet of cricket flour, and a recipe for brownies that call for the flour! This product claims to be the future of food (cricket flour), and I love that the packaging is fully compostable! A “full circle” food product! 😊:
      http://www.yumpabar.co.uk/

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    2. Oh, the pictures…Any excuse to be silly! :)

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  4. I've tried a lot of different foods, but bugs are one of those things I just haven't done yet. I'm glad to hear you liked the texture of them! That is what worries me the most about trying them, haha. Loved the photos of you trying them too!

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    1. Hi Lindsey! I was wondering if you’d ever tried bugs, in all of your travels! I would like to try them in an actual recipe, with seasoning, and other stuff! The ones I ate were a little bland, but an exotic choice for me ,for sure!

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  5. Oh, I think bugs can be really healthy!
    xx from Bavaria/Germany, Rena
    www.dressedwithsoul.com

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    1. Hi Rena, yes, that is the current word on the street! Full of protein, and they are quite filling! And, easy on the environment,

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  6. Very informative post! I would have never imagined an article about bug eating to be so intriguing, but it was and I'm glad you are taking a stance to normalize it. I typically  would not ever consider eating bugs, but after this article of seeing you overcome mental blocks, and the stigma of bug eating-- I would possibly be open to trying in the future. It was also very helpful of Aly to mention how the fecal matter is removed-- that was a question I had been pondering.Thanks again for the awesome post! Also, I loved the pictures lol! Maybe next, you will post an article of "bug recipes" you have tried lol.

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    1. Hello, thank you so much for stopping by, and for your encouraging comments!! Yes, I would love to try some actual recipes! A cricket stir-fry, perhaps?! I may have to write a part two! Bugs for Thanksgiving dinner, I wonder if I could pull that off?! 😊

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