As millions around the world go hungry, a solution may have just reared its head and flapped its wings: insects as food.
Crickets have about as much protein as beef and one company has decided to turn the insects into protein bars customers can buy from their local grocery store, according to CBS San Francisco.
Exo protein bars are made primarily from cricket flour and are supposed to have a toasty, nutty, and earthy flavor.
The problem comes in marketing the cricket-based bars to consumers.
Exo Co-founder Greg Sewitz told CBS San Francisco his company doesn’t put pictures of crickets on the packaging because they want consumers to try them.
“We did a lot of research into the psychology of disgust. And obviously it’s kind of intuitive that you wouldn’t want to put a picture of something people find gross on a food package as you’re about to ask them to eat it.”
Insects, including crickets, are an important part of the diet for about a third of the world, according to Wired, which puts the United States behind the bell curve for inventive food solutions.
Along with being nutritious, it’s also easier and less resource intensive to run a cricket farm than a traditional livestock farm.
Plus, they’re gluten free.
Maybe that’s why Exo isn’t the only company making protein bars out of crickets.
Crowbar Protein recently ran a $15,000 Kickstarter campaign to raise funds to build a company that will sell cricket protein bars to upscale grocery stores, according to Wired.
Made from 20 percent real crickets, they’re called Jungle Bars and they’re completely free of soy, gluten, dairy, and nuts.
One thing is certain; something needs to be done to feed the world’s homeless.
In France, the government just took the unprecedented step of requiring its supermarkets to donate their unused food to charity.
The move comes as a growing number of French citizens have been feeding themselves by dumpster diving in waste bins outside grocery stores French Assembly member Yves Jégo told Climate Progress.
“There’s an absolute urgency — charities are desperate for food.”
Perhaps Entomophagy, the practice of eating insects, is the answer the world has been looking for.
After all, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization released a report earlier this month saying that a diet heavy in insects can lessen obesity and benefit the environment, according to the Inquisitr.
Just don’t put crickets on the packaging.
[Photo Illustration by Sean Gallup/Getty Images]