Pasta made from worms, anyone?

It may be time to bet on bugs as the future of food.

Many of us are unable to stomach the thought of eating insects, but these tiny bugs could help to resolve the world’s looming food crisis.

A 2013 report by the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) revealed that insects require less land and water than it takes to rear cattle. This means farmers could produce more edible insects than beef with the same resources.

The practice of eating bugs — known as entomophagy — is also a promising solution to increasing environmental pressures as insects emit fewer greenhouse gases and less ammonia than cows and pigs. According to the United Nations, mealworms contain a similar amount of protein, vitamins and minerals as fish and meat — making it a viable substitute for the traditional meat industry.1

Hong Kong-based start-up Livin Farms is currently working on a compact insect incubator model that will enable the cultivation and use of mealworms in kitchens and classrooms. The aim of the start-up, which began making insect incubators in 2016, is to find an alternative food source that could help to address food security issues while meeting the nutritional needs of consumers.2

Creeped out by the thought of dining on bugs? You may be surprised to learn that you are likely already eating them on a regular basis. The United States’ Food and Drug Administration’s Defect Levels Handbook highlights that popular foods such as curry powder and chopped dates are allowed certain levels of insect infestation, that do not present a health hazard to consumers.3

Environmental pressures have also touched the investment world with socially responsible investing becoming more mainstream. Find out more.

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