by Snipe and Celly on November 4, 2015 - 12:22am
Entomophagy is the practice of eating comestible insects such as arachnids and centipedes. This process is shunned upon by the societies of rich countries as the Europeans looked down upon it when colonizing the world because they observed many tribes they considered as ‘savages’ practicing this. It can also be because due to western culinary habits rooting from colder climates with fewer insects and increased farming of larger animals. Although this practice may seem disgusting to most, it would be extremely beneficial to the environment and to our health if everyone adopted this lifestyle.
If we look at a map, it is estimated that 38% of what we see is agricultural and farming land. If we changed our diet to eating insects rather than animals, we could reduce this number by a significant amount. It takes around 200 square meters to grow 1 pound of beef while growing a pound of cricket takes only 15 square meters. Farming animals takes over 90% more space than farming insects.
To continue, only 40% of a cow is edible and digestible by humans while humans can fully digest 80% of a cricket. This means not only are insects easier to farm, they are also easier to consume. They will also cause less health risks as they do not require additional hormones to enhance their growth because they only take 2-3 weeks to reach full size.
It is expected that in 2025, 1.8 billion humans will live in areas with little to no potable water. If water is imperative to our survival, why do we use 70% of our potable water to quench livestock and nourish crops? Why use an irreplaceable and essential resource to produce one that could easily be substituted? While it takes 10 000 liters of water to produce 1 pound of beef, 1600 liters of water to produce 1 pound of pork and 1000 liters of water to produce 1 pound of chicken, it takes less than 1 liter of water to produce 1 pound of cricket. This is because insects can fully hydrate themselves using only the food that they consume.
Although eating insects may seem disgusting, it is very advantageous in many different ways. It takes 90% less space to farm, a higher percentage of a single insect can be eaten compared the percentage of a single animal that can be eaten and insects can fully hydrate themselves with the food they eat requiring little to no water in order to survive.