Dude, the bugs are hot right now. We have Europeans eat worms. We have an designated cicada cookbook. We have around a million crops, environmental and nutritional reasons to use insects as a source of protein. And our pets too, by a recent CNBC article on the next wave of insect-based animal feed.
The article cites a few insect-based pet food brands, including UK start-up Yora Pet Foods claiming their black soldier fly kibble tastes like Stilton and cheese cookies. “We expect that as consumers become more aware of their own carbon footprints and their pets’ carbon ‘paw prints’, insect proteins will be adopted by more and more pet owners. ‘animals as a viable and marketable alternative to traditional meat,’ said Yora, general manager Glenn Rankin told CNBC.
Rankin isn’t wrong: CNBC cites a 2021 report from RaboResearch, a Dutch food and agri-food research group, which predicts that demand for insect protein in pet food and feed could reach half a million metric tonnes by 2030. C This is a huge leap from current demand, around 10,000 metric tonnes. In response, many companies are lining up to sell their buggy products. CNBC cites a few, including Mars Petcare, part of confectionery giant Mars, which pilots a dry cat food made from black soldier fly larvae. Smaller operations like Toronto-based HOPE Pet Foods are also on the bridge, with HOPE planning to launch treats and foods that contain algae and black soldier fly larvae and a characteristic “nutty taste.”
As demand increases, US pet food regulations may also bend a bit to accommodate more insects in pet food. Honestly my dog ate a raisin on the sidewalk yesterday so I think he would be cool with fly larvae in his kibble. If you are intrigued by the idea of insect-based pet foods, check out the full article here.