Currently, about 2bn people consume insects, so there must be a scaled industry already as well.

Then, you can buy cricket powder at roughly $100/kg.

Now my concern is:

  • if this is already a common nutrition source, why the price? (could not imagine, those 2bn people pay that)
  • nevertheless insect farming wherever it takes involves lot of manual labour

In my understanding, a future source of food should match the following criteria:

  • sustainable (OK)
  • cheap (not clear)
  • scalable through automation (I think this is currently very limited)

Compared to a meat brewery, if they will mature, seems easier to scale, even if entrypoint is harder.

So why is the price currently so high and how exactly are these insects will become the future of food (media excitement put aside) - is a realistic criteria market turnover?


1 Answer 1


Currently, the problem lies in the genetic selection to make insects suitable for mass processing.

Let's compare this to chicken farming

  1. Human society already select chicken that will grow lots of meat for many years
  2. There are machinery available to "process" the chicken
  3. There are existing demands and supply chain.
  4. Currently chicken is cheap

In industrial scale, it is all about ease of processing. Currently, insects like crickets is not a good competing candidate. However, it is just a matter of time for the food scientist to discover a suitable insect.

  • $\begingroup$ nevertheless at least regarding demand there is enough and they start building machinery, compare: foodnavigator-asia.com/Article/2018/07/26/… $\endgroup$
    – J. Doe
    Aug 24, 2018 at 9:48
  • $\begingroup$ @J.Doe : The price is not viable as staples replacement. $\endgroup$
    – mootmoot
    Aug 24, 2018 at 9:50
  • $\begingroup$ why? i.e. sure you pay anything to survive, but then, is this a bet on all other staples prices growing considerably next years? likewise, doubled or quadrupled meat price? $\endgroup$
    – J. Doe
    Aug 24, 2018 at 9:55
  • $\begingroup$ @J.Doe Perhaps maggot is a more viable solutions, or some undiscovered insects. Unfortunately since international conglomerate destroyed forests for farming, it will also destroy the biological source for selection. There is always a jokes that some super food source(high protein, high oil extraction,etc ) already lies in the jungle but human may already destroy it ;-) $\endgroup$
    – mootmoot
    Aug 24, 2018 at 10:03
  • $\begingroup$ well just make sure you've read Tuf Voyaging. $\endgroup$
    – J. Doe
    Aug 24, 2018 at 10:48

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.