April 11, 2012

"If your Big Mac is going to cost about $100 and your Bug Mac is going to cost only $4, people will change to a Bug Mac."

Says Arnold van Huis, the world's biggest expert on entomophagy (the eating of insects).
He believes the rising price of meat will help change diets.
Help? Why is NPR using the word "help" there?
Van Huis says the challenge is to make it delicious. That's where Marian Peters comes in. For years, as secretary of the Dutch insect breeders association Venik, she's been active in bringing edible insects to consumers' tables. And Peters says the first commercially available bug sandwich will be out soon — a wrap filled with insects and peas.
It's easy to make food with bugs in that tastes just fine. We've been eating food all along that has insect parts in it:
The Food Defect Action Levels: Levels of natural or unavoidable defects in foods that present no health hazards for humans is a publication of the United States Food and Drug Administration's Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition detailing acceptable levels of food contamination from sources such as maggots, thrips, insect fragments, "foreign matter", mold, rodent hairs, and insect and mammalian feces.
It's not a question of whether insects are in your food. It's a question of whether you want to hear about it and consciously embrace the activity — entomophagy — that you've been engaging in all along.

There are people who want you to like it, and people who are perversely excited about the way financial pressure is going to help you like it.

Well, so long as it's merely a cash incentive, we can't complain too much. And maybe some day Congress could impose a penalty, collected through your tax return, for people who choose to eat too much meat over insects. Don't worry. Congress isn't going to require you to eat insects. They just wouldn't do that. So don't worry about whether it has the power to do something it's never ever going to do. And, by the way, eating insects is not kosher, but if Congress said everyone had to eat insects, and failed to make an exemption for people who adhere to a kosher diet for religious reasons, it would not violate the Free Exercise Clause. But don't worry. Congress would never require you to eat insects, and if it did, it would offer an exemption for religious folk. I'm sure.

What am I talking about? Have you heard of insect politics? Neither have I!

"Insects don't have politics.... they're very brutal. No compassion.... no compromise. We can't trust the insect. I'd like to become the first insect politician. I'd like to, but.... I'm an insect.... who dreamed he was a man, and loved it. But now the dream is over, and the insect is awake."

See, this is where I end up when I get to thinking about insects and politics. But please. Calm down. Don't worry about the government and it's plans for the insect. Be very cool, like our biggest politician who is famous cool. Watch how calmly he proceeds with his insect politics:

Whaddya think? That was pretty impressive. He got the sucker.


MadisonMan said...

It'll take a lot more than cost pressures to make me entomophagic.

AJ Lynch said...

But how will People For the Ethical Treatment of Bugs react?

KLDAVIS said...

"If there's a blue pill and a red pill, and the blue pill is half the price of the red pill and works just as well, why not pay half price..."

ricpic said...

The solution to government created hyperinflation is to eat bugs. It's what's for dinner AND the price of voting for compassion. So that's your choice. Be a meanie and eat meat or be a caring person and eat bugs.

traditionalguy said...

The Commerce Clause will soon be involved. Mandatory insect diets ais good Commerce and eating cows is bad Commerce.

We will all soon drive our electric Yugos a few miles, if our passes allow, stop at a McDonalds next to a scenic Wind Mill Farms vista for some fried locusts and tofu, and then go worship Cow Gods in our Yoga Classes.

A Kenyan king is not working out as well as we thought it would.

Kit said...

With climate and economic pressures, sure, it could come to this. Why not?

SGT Ted said...

There's nothing more tedious and obnoxious than the meat haters.

It is NOT natural for humans to eat a non-meat diet.

I know some folks who use the "environment" nonsense to excuse their own squeamishness with reality as well, like when a 3 year old decides she isn't going to eat burgers anymore because she finds out they are made of cows, which usually lasts until they really want a burger. Some never grow up.

SGT Ted said...

IF you think its hard to get a 3 year old to eat his veggies, wait until you are telling him to eat his grubs.

MaggotAtBroad&Wall said...

I'm looking forward to a progressive utopian future when I can drive to a convenience store and fill' er up with algae and grab a bag full of dry roasted cockroachs to munch on. Maybe then we'll reach our progressive utopian heaven on earth.

Pogo said...

Euthanasia would make meat a lot cheaper.

Mix in bug parts and you got the perfect socialist hamburger.

Soylent Green is delicious!

Love said...

Wouldn't people eating less meat "help" them live longer and healthier?

Every study or report I've ever read supports that fact.

Love said...

SGT Ted "There's nothing more tedious and obnoxious than the meat haters."

So vegans and others who eat little meat are now "meat haters?"

Are meat eaters veggie haters?

Good lord...get real.

Henry said...

What Kit said.

Sure you can get all hung up on the premise that diets need changing, but Van Huis is really just talking basic economics. If you can make something cheap and tasty why wouldn't people eat it?

Given that U.S. Farm policy is oriented toward making meat cheap and corn syrup plentiful, it seems to me that the bug people are among the more honest brokers in the market.

rhhardin said...

The frog in him will keep trying to get out. Stanley Cavell, the frog and the prince.

Curious George said...

"He got the sucker"

Yes, he has gotten many suckers.

dbp said...

"Why is NPR using the word "help" there"

The implied though unexplored assumption is that we ought to be eating less meat and more bugs.

I doubt that bugs are more efficient than animals at turning feed into meat--once you take into account the more manageable size of animals over insects. And yes, I am aware that insects are a class of animal.

Geoff Matthews said...

"Yet among the winged insects that go on all fours you may eat those which have legs above their feet, with which to leap on the earth. Of them you may eat: the locust according to its kind, the bald locust according to its kind, the cricket according to its kind, and the grasshopper according to its kind. But all other winged insects which have four feet are an abomination to you." (Leviticus 11:21-23 RSV)

So, good news! Not all insects are forbidden.

PogoПОССУМ said...

"Wouldn't people eating less meat "help" them live longer and healthier?"

точно, товарищ!! Exact, comrade!!

Make strong like machine, and work until die!

Finish 5 year plan in 4!

bagoh20 said...

I love that monologue from the movie (The Fly). Insect politics indeed. Imagine eating your lover's head off to get him to ejaculate for you like the female praying mantis.

I know what you're thinking. Don't say it. I know you want to. You can't hold it in can you?

edutcher said...

This is that Brave New World the Lefties have planned for us.

And probably have had for a long time.

Can't wait until they start talking about Soylent Green.

Henry said...

SGT Ted wrote: IF you think its hard to get a 3 year old to eat his veggies, wait until you are telling him to eat his grubs.

My 10-year-old won't eat chicken, but after a week in outdoors camp he'll eat grubs.

Pogo said...

"I know what you're thinking. Don't say it. I know you want to. You can't hold it in can you?"

You mean:
That's how I met my first wife?

Love said...

edutcher - Yeah, right.

ONLY liberals eat less meat.

It's a HUGE conspiracy.


SGT Ted said...

Most vegetarians I know hate meat eating and are animal rights activists to boot, they just are polite about it. They are all about their "moral" superiority in not eating animals as a conscientious political choice. They are the first ones to push junk science about the "dangers" of eating meat and how distructive animals herding is to Mother Gaia and are likely to believe other nonsense health fads. I know this because I hang out with a bunch of them from time to time.

Don't pretend these folks don't exist as the mainstream of the anti-meat movement. They are what drives it.

Here and here say it all.

bagoh20 said...

I love animals, and have a real empathy thing with many of them. I see a personality that may not exist, but I see it clearly. I anthropomorphize like a m*therf#&ker, so I really don't want to eat meat, because of the whole killing them thing.

But I just can't help it. I love meat, and a life without it hardly seems worth living. It eats at me, but doubt I'll ever go pure veggie. I just try not to think about it. I know it's perfectly natural. Death and even inter-species murder is part of the way the world works, and is designed to work.

I would not have this problem eating insects, mostly because of their politics. Now that I think of it, I could probably eat leftists with little problem for the same reason. I have a hard time anthropomorphizing them. That just requires too much imagination.

bagoh20 said...

Love, I bet you'd be delicious, with a nice Chianti.

BarrySanders20 said...

Insects, like crustaceans, are arthropods, and we greedily eat up the lobsters, crabs, and shrimp. Just about anything tastes good with butter and garlic, as long as the texture is right. So I don't see it as impossible that McFly is a potential future fast food joint, just extremely unlikely.

It's amusing that the pro-catastrophe "climate pressures" folks link climate change to bug-eating. The past alarmism promising that we will all die hasn't worked, so now the alarmism has evolved to the hell-on-earth of having to consume insects to stay alive if we are lucky enough to survive the rising seas. Suck it, energy-consuming, breeding, meat-eaters!

And yes, the cooly rational insect overlords controlling Obamacare can make you eat bugs if it is rationally related to improving heath care outcomes, but only if the SCOTUS rules that it is OK to force you into commerce to buy insurance to finance your heath care purchases.

So anyone who doesn't want to eat bugs should root root root for Anthony "No Bugs" Kennedy to side with the conservatives to strike down the mandatory bug eating law called Obamacare.

Rusty said...

"If your Big Mac is going to cost about $100 and your Bug Mac is going to cost only $4, people will change to a Bug Mac."
Says Arnold van Huis, the world's biggest expert on entomophagy (the eating of insects).

Uh. You can have mine.

When big macs are a $100.00 there will be a huge black market in other meats, including human.
One of the nasty unintended consequences of trying to control a market.

Carl Vero said...

Though Obama a fly did swat
A bug does not a burger make
Bugged by failures in his wake
People ask – who IS this gnat!

bgates said...

I love meat, and a life without it hardly seems worth living. It eats at me

Sounds like you're even.

TWM said...

You want people to be thinner, feed them more meat not less. Carbs - sugary, white, bloated carbs - are the enemy.

rhhardin said...

Some comedian long ago said that since there were no explicit rules about limits on nuclear waste in ground beef, that we simply put it there.

Richard Dolan said...

"Have you heard of insect politics?"

Well, if they can make you eat broccoli, I suppose they can make you eat bugs. Does that count as insect politics?

WV: Fitar stinged. That can't be a coincidence.

Lucien said...

Meal Worms! The guy who named them that may turn out to have been a commrecial genius -- but I bet he won't make a penny off of it.

Of course ther will have to be strict regulatory limits on how many stray cow parts are allowed in a Meal Worm meal.

Four legs good . . . six legs Delicious!

joeschmo1of3 said...

Why do so-called progressives want us to regress to living in caves, in the dark, shivering, naked, pouring ashes on our heads, while eating bugs, grubs, and moldy roots? Doesn't seem like progress to me.

Peter said...

The real test is if you'll eat 'em alive.

But, yes, bug paste has less of an ick factor than lots of other things- such as harvesting algae scum off of algae-farm tanks and turning it into food.

ken in sc said...

My dad used to tell us kids that fried okra—pronounced okry in my family—was made up of grasshoppers and crickets. We believed him and ate it anyway.

In the Philippines, a certain kind of flying cricket swarms at the beginning of the rainy season. People gather under street lights to catch them for food.

Chip Ahoy said...

We remember that day, that glorious day when Obama swatted that fly right out of the air with one hand, Obama not the fly, the other hand used as emphasizing gestures to his unbroken conversation as a stunned nation stood awestruck in their wondering gaze and regard for their new president. Yes, I do remember that day and our own response to it -- how to catch a fly when you don't have our own Obama. It involved a box and string, a decoy fly made up real alluringly with wig and face makeup and a plate of poo.

pst314 said...

Pogo 10:28 AM "Euthanasia would make meat a lot cheaper. Mix in bug parts and you got the perfect socialist hamburger."

"A statist in every bite", now that's an advertising slogan!

Chip Ahoy said...

But I guess I should mention that we see what you did there, what with the 'don't worry government would never do that'. Would never overstep enumerated powers -- would not do that thing that sounds insane presently but maybe not so insane in the future, in fact, the way is being paved for it right now.

That trend will fail because it is not foresightful, here's why.

The humans as insectivore plan fails because it does not account for future space travel in which humans encounter the insect races. It will be impossible for us to explain our diets to them and we will be forced to beat a hasty retreat back to our own space, but now having made important enemies. It's a lasting embarrassment.

Chip Ahoy said...

So the plan was rejected from the start. The humans as insectivore plan arrived with its own seed of destruction already planted. It's quite automatic. Current with the pro insectivore dieter movement there occurred the growth of the antiinsectivorites, the Don't Molt on Me Party that rose surprisingly rapidly and within a few years completely overtook the original insectivores.

Paul said...

Obama wants to raise price of gas and this nut wants to raise the price of meat.

Bunch of idiots.

William said...

They say that the bravest man who ever lived was the first man to eat an oyster. If humans can be sufficiently adaptable to eat oysters, which, after all, look like a puddle of wet snot, then they can adapt to eating insects. But so far as saving money goes, I don't think the plan will work. How long before Whole Foods starts selling free range pine beetles harvested in primeval northwest forests? The cost will be more than that of Kobe beef, but that's the whole point of it......I do see this advantage. There is a tremendous amount of antipathy towards cannbalism. Perhaps by eating the maggots that feed on human corpses, we can find our way around that primitive taboo. Maybe Whole Foods can bring out a line of maggots that feeds exclusively on third trimester foetuses. I'm sure that would be a big best seller among Whole Foods consumers.

William said...

Enjoy your lunch everybody.

Tarzan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tarzan said...

Swatting the fly was indeed fairly impressive.

But Bush Jr. getting the shoe was infinitely more impressive.

I just love the way he ducks - not once but twice - perfectly and then looks right at the idiot who threw it with just a hint of a smirk on his face.

THAT'S a f***ing President.

David Blaska said...

He'll be hearing from PETA.

EMD said...

One wonders if our gracious host masturbates to the fly swatting video. It's only made it's 4th appearance on the blog.

Kirk Parker said...

One word: termites.

If people in the west knew how good they were, bacon might be knocked off it throne...

Dust Bunny Queen said...

If my Big MAC is going to cost $100 dollars, I sure as Hell am NOT going to eat bugs and worms.

I'll go shoot a deer.

John Lynch said...

Bugs, Mr. Rico. Zillions of them.

Rusty said...

Dust Bunny Queen said...
If my Big MAC is going to cost $100 dollars, I sure as Hell am NOT going to eat bugs and worms.

I'll go shoot a deer.

Whales. There's a whole bunch of good red meat on whales. I bet that tenderloin is the size of a school bus.