A Meat and Dairy Article from All-Creatures.org

Human insect use and consumption – a compilation

From There’s an Elephant in the Room blog
September 2022

Concerning insects, many humans experience generally unjustified, but fairly widespread, feelings of revulsion towards some of them, so it’s hardly surprising that it’s rare to see articles questioning the morality of using insect lives and bodies, or examining the way in which they experience their lives. Even some of the sources linked here, included because they are informative, examine insect flesh consumption only in comparison to the flesh of other animal species.

house Crickett

I was shocked to read recently that around 1 TRILLION (1 trillion = 1,000,000,000,000) individual insects are currently raised for consumption and killed on farms every year. It’s a staggering number, all the more so for the fact that it’s almost never publicised. Despite over a decade living vegan, I was previously completely unaware that the exploitation of insects is so extensive. And that exploitation is booming.

The INFOODS program at Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in Rome has published the Food composition database for biodiversity with the aim of making nutritional values of wild and underutilized foods available. In the latest version (2017 version 4.0) of this database, a total of 471 entries of edible insects were included. Looking more closely, I discovered that there are six common commercial edible insect species at present, including cricket (Acheta domesticus), honeybee (Apis mellifera), domesticated silkworm (Bombyx mori), mopane caterpillar (Imbrasia belina), African palm weevil (Rhynchoporus phoenicis) and yellow meal worm (Tenebrio molitor). And yes – in response to a question I asked too – honey bees and silkworms ARE eaten in some places.

What do we know about how insects experience life?

Whereas there are vast reservoirs of information about the use and exploitation of mammals, marsupials, birds, and other land based individuals, as well as fishes and other aquatic individuals, we come across less information about insects. Along with our knowledge of our commonest victim species, there is a wealth of scientific information to confirm their sentience, the way they experience their lives and living, along with copious medical evidence of the needlessness of our species’ use and consumption of their lives and bodies.


Please read the ENTIRE ARTICLE HERE.

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