The Great Lakes region – Can tiny livestock solve big hunger?

The Great Lakes region is expanding efforts to meet the demands of a looming global food scarcity crisis. The problem: It’s hard to convince people to eat bugs.

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) estimates the world’s population will grow to 9 billion by 2050. And it will take a big increase in food production to feed all those people.

Eating insects is well-established in Africa, Asia and Australia. But the agency concludes that the practice called entomophagy should increase in North America as well.

The number of insect farms in Canada and the U.S. is growing. Most new insect farms, processors and makers of specialty products are startups that sell online.

Expanding entomophagy research shows insects contain protein, vitamin B, iron and calcium and have possible probiotic benefits that aid digestion.

And bugs can be easier on the environment. Insects eat much less per pound and require less energy and water than other livestock. That’s important because the FAO has identified the lack of water as a threat to food production.

But there are concerns.

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