The Case for Insects
If your appetites are more adventurous, look no further than entomophagy, or the practice of eating insects. For Hong Kong-based designer Katharina Unger, transforming perceptions around entomophagy may be the key to more connected and sustainable food systems After all, insects are already on most menus. ‘Eighty per cent of the world actually eats them already in some fashion,’ she told TEDxVienna, ‘so it is the food of today and the food of the future.’ After exploring insect farming in her product design studies, Unger founded LIVIN Farms to produce sleek insect farming technology for domestic and commercial use. Her Hive model can fit on a desk, and uses household food waste to raise enough mealworms for a 200-500 gram harvest each week. Insects, said Unger in a 2019 interview, ‘can take waste materials and make high-quality protein and fertiliser’ — a powerful panacea for the pollution of traditional agriculture. Described as having a pleasing nutty flavour and crispy texture, mealworms contain a similar amount of protein to beef while packing fibre, essential vitamins and minerals like potassium and vitamin A. Unger suggests putting them in a patty, adding them to fried rice or baking with insect-based flours.