Dear Foodie: Alternate Food Sources

Dear Foodie,

I try to be socially responsible and care about how we are going to feed nine billion people in 2050. But, I have to admit, just to worry about getting nutritious food down the gullet of my two children each day is challenging enough. I read where bugs are starting to show up as meals – tell me it isn’t true.

grasshopper

Dear Bugged,

Before you start taking a magnifying glass with you to your favorite restaurant to examine the garnish on your salad, we haven’t gone to the bugs just yet (though a few adventurous chefs just might). But, scientists are at work on a variety of food “substitutes” for what we commonly put on our table today. Because of the shortage of land and water, we have to begin thinking – micro not macro.

Cows grazing on an open field in the Midwest may inspire writers to wax eloquently of pastoral scenes but aren’t as efficient as meat “created” in the laboratory; bugs are tiny yet packed with protein and commonly eaten already in many parts of the world. Algae which has heretofore conjured up images akin to green slime is showing great promise as a source of food and fuel.

All of this is part of the growing ethos not only of finding alternate food sources but of using what is already at our finger and in some cases our toe-tips! If you wish for adventure – go out to the yard, gather some crickets and put them to good use. This could give “snap, crackle and pop” a new meaning for the kids!

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