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Costa Rica Fighting Hunger with Insect Consumption?

Costa Rica News – World hunger is a serious issue. Such a large population is without adequate nutrition and the population is growing fast. Something needs to be done about food distribution. The Institute of Food Technologists is holding a contest to find creative ideas.

mealworm and flourTwo teams from UCR qualified for the final which will be held in July in Chicago. The teams will compete against a university from Malaysia, two from the US, and one from Canada.

One of the groups chose to focus on malnutrition in Haiti and the other on vitamin deficiency in children of northern Costa Rica. They have come up with protein and vitamin sources that are insect based, planet friendly, from readily available sources, and with a flavor that people will eat.

Molibannan is a nutritious mixture of beetle larvae (mealworm) and dried banana flour.

The other team made Criketa, a cookie made from flour cricket and mashed sweet potatoes (with a chocolate flavor).

The Food and Agriculture Organization promotes insect consumption and has a book on edible insects. Molibannan is intended for babies in Haiti. These fried cakes, rice and beans are the only food they have. Infants are the best targets to promote cultural change and develop a taste for eating beetles.

Criketa will be given to children in poor areas of Costa Rica to fill gaps in vitamin A, iron and protein.

These options are nutritional, reportedly taste good, provide fiber, fat, protein and vitamins, and have a low impact on nature. To produce one kilo of insect protein, two kilos of food are needed. To produce a kilo of beef, 10 kilos of food are needed.

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