3 THINGS TO KNOW BEFORE EATING INSECTS
Today there are more and more kinds of products appearing using insects as an edible food source. You (the consumer) might be lost within all these offers: whole insects, processed insects, raised in Europe, Asia or elsewhere, organic or not…
Here are the 3 main questions we get asked which should make things clearer for you!
Can I eat insects?
As we already explained it in a previous article about allergens, eating insects is not recommended for those of you who are allergic to crustaceans. Indeed, insects are part of the same family of crustaceans, cousins if you like, that share the same allergens. It’s better to ask your friends before you let them eat insects if they’re allergic to crustaceans, thus avoiding having to pop to the chemist or indeed hospital. That way you will get the chance to enjoy your aperitif!
If you or your friend is pregnant there is no reason why you cannot still enjoy eating insects. However, because it’s not recommended to eat unknown products during the pregnancy, we would suggest to err on the side of caution and wait until after your baby is born!
Where do the insects come from and is it good quality?
In a few years, eating insects won’t seem as unfamiliar as it does now! We hope it will be thanks to JIMINI’S but we can’t do everything (even if we’d love to)! There are more and more players in the market offering all types of insect to eat from many areas. In order to avoid any bad experience, we advise you to ask about the origin of the insects.
At JIMINI’S, we’ve decided to work only with European suppliers. Those European suppliers guarantee us the best quality and a clear traceability that is controlled by the European Authorities. Unfortunately, in most cases, insects imported from Asia or Africa do not fit the required health standards enforced in Europe and are mainly raised in opaque conditions, from their facilities to their food (ie “why you don’t eat the insects from your garden”). Also, we would question the environmental logic about importing insects from far flung parts of the globe by air only to sell them in Europe.
We have included this question to educate you the consumer. It’s no coincidence that Belgium was the first country to ban on the market all the insects raised outside the EU!
Which products should we choose for starting eating insects?
There are many possible answers to this question but we recommend avoiding insects that you seprogramsvor programmes (ie: the enormous and completely creepy insects) and focus on small insects such as crickets and mealworms. The grasshopper, although it’s very impressive, is no bigger than a prawn and so is also ideal! If you have never tried insects before, you should start with dehydrated and seasoned insects or even energy bars made with cricket flour that will remove all visual barriers. If you are ready to progress to the next stage and cook an insect based dish it is always advisable to taste them before cooking, so you can enjoy their “original” taste. It can also depend on the occasion as you might prefer an energy bar at 9:30AM rather than mealworms seasoned with garlic & herbs J
One thing that has become clear; you prefer to enjoy your first insects with friends! They are a great talking point, with the bravest of you able to reassure the most fearful to try the insects without actual physical force! J Eating insects should be a fun discovery and not an obligation!