Byron Bay company Grilo products
Byron Bay company Grilo products

Hmmm crickets ... the latest superfood trend

THERE'S a new superfood hitting the shelves - crickets.

Yes, the insects. They're a natural source of protein, minerals and nutrients.

Byron Bay company Grilo started selling cricket-based foods in 2016, and co-founder Lucas Becker said while people were initially hesitant to eat the insects there was "definitely a growth in the market".

"Generally most of the western cultures seem to have a barrier to eating insects but it's just a matter of time to catch on to the new food train," Mr Becker said.

More than a quarter of the world's population already eats insects.

The food source is catching on in Australia with about five insect farms around the country, but since starting out Grilo has sourced its insects from a certified organic farm in Canada.

When it comes to changing our diets to include insects, time is of the essence according to Mr Becker, who said by 2050 the population would be 9.7billion.

He said the food movement was imperative "in order to feed the population".

"The biggest thing for (Grilo) is the sustainability side of things. Crickets are much more efficient than livestock," Mr Becker said.

Crickets require less land, water, food and energy than many other popular protein sources including beef, chicken and pork.

Mr Becker said the insect produces 80 times less methane than cattle and is 12 times more efficient in converting food to meat than cattle, four times more efficient than pigs, and two times more efficient than chooks.

It takes one litre of water to produce 1kg of crickets, compared to 22,000 litres of water to produce 1kg of beef.

Good things in small packages

Crickets have 2.2 x more iron than spinach, 3 x more protein than beef, 10x more vitamin b12 than salmon, as much calcium as milk, 3x more potassium than banana and are a fine source of omega 3.

Grilo offers Organic Cricket Protein Powders and Organic Cricket Energy Bars which are stocked in some stores in Byron Bay and Lennox Head and an online store.

Try the protein powder in smoothies, curries, pizza bases, bread, and muffins - it can be an addition to any of the food we already eat.