Hi, I’m Steve. And you are you. (Introductions are out of the way.)
The Hampshire Review has graciously allowed me to blog about something that I am kind of passionate about– entomophagy [EN toe MA fa gee], eating bugs. Ed DeWitt’s feature on entomaphagy made me think some of the public might be interested.
Honestly I got interested mainly for elementary school type entertainment– “Ewwww! a bug!” But the more I learn about eating insects, I have become convinced they will likely be an important factor in our future and the future of our planet.
Quite frankly I am skeptical of some of the amazing claims made by the folks who advocate eating insects. But if even a small percentage of the claims made by entomophogy advocates turn out to be ture, it will still be worth investigating. We have seen so many fads, and we have heard so many incredible claims. But for many reasons insects as food seem to me to be the “real thing” and they certainly seem to deserve thoughtful consideration and lots of further research.
I have no creds relating to entomophagy. I am a farmer and retired teacher. When my wife and I had a chance to teach overseas in Taiwan and Samoa, (That was the last time I blogged for the Hampshire Review) we got to try some foods we were unaccustomed to such as palolo (a green polychete sea worm), durian (anspikey strong scented fruit), tia deng (quail “iron eggs”) and sashimi. Some we just didn’t care for. But many we really enjoyed, and we will always be grateful to folks who introduced us to those foods. Insects have an amazing range of flavors and textures.
Humans have eaten insects for millenium, and insects are still an important part of the diets for people in Asia, Africa, Australia and South America. Unfortunately for us, when Americans and Europeans found that bugs were competitors/pests– sometimes destroying their crops. So we developed an aversion to insects.
I hope that people will keep an open mind and consider the benefits of eating insects. I was encouraged the other evening at the Roomsburg Cabin, a reception for the Italian exchange students, when Cindy Ritz tried some hard core bug snacks– roasted crickets.
I am also encouraged by the readiness with which young people embrace entopmophagy. After all, they, according to many predictions, are the ones who will have to figure out how to feed a population of 9 billion by 2050 (up from the current 7 billion.) Next time I will tell you about my visit to my daughter, Steph’s and grandkids school in Concord, NC– to share– eating bugs of course.
Here’s a great video (approx. 5 min.) Should we eat bugs? – by Emma Bryce.