The potential of insects as food sources – a review

Nelson Mota de Carvalho, Ana Raquel Madureira, Manuela Estevez Pintado*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Entomophagy is a long-time practice and a food source for many cultures. Still, many societies have abandoned it a long time ago, and regard it as a primal behavior. However, nowadays, the challenge for food demand, with the urge of new nutritional sources, and the problems of undernourishment, mainly on underdeveloped countries, has reached a point where a new perspective is demanded. This review gathers some of the most recent studies regarding the potential benefits and concerns of entomophagy, trying to show the potential of insects as food source and possible ways to introduce them in cultures that have disregarded entomophagy. Entomophagy is taking its place, showing the grand potential of insects as feed and food source. As neophobia and disgust are the main western cultures barriers to accept entomophagy, today’s comprehension of this practice and processing capabilities can take that source, to any dish in any form. A simple but nutritive insect powder can create a path to a widely, sustainable, rich food source—insects.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3642-3652
Number of pages11
JournalCritical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition
Volume60
Issue number21
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Keywords

  • Edible insects
  • Insect powder
  • Neophobia
  • Nutrition

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