Why so many crickets?

“Why is everyone using crickets?” is one of the most asked questions I get from journalists and other entopreneurs.
The most truthful answer is because its the only insect we can use.

No other insect is farmed on as large an industrial scale as crickets in the US. The first commercial farm was started in 1945 (Armstrong’s) and they’ve made moderately good use of the time since. Feed mixtures, rearing protocols, and the nuances of the life cycle are understand well enough to establish a profitable (at times greatly so) business. Recently technological innovation in cricket production has halted significantly, but thats for another post.

Having this establish production point in place made it exponentially easier to build a supply chain. Add the fact that crickets exemplify everything positive about Entomophagy (high feed conversion, low land/water use, high nutritional profile) and you have a great reason to not bother with most other insects. Its just too convenient and, as the Ento industry is so young, no company has the resources needed to build out a species specific farm (yet).

We’re actually pretty lucky. The cricket species farmed in the US are perfect for human consumption and are in the upper realm of protein content. They even grind into a fine powder rather easily, allowing for incorporation into all kinds of conventional foods.

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