A new San Francisco startup called Bitty Foods is banking on people setting aside their qualms about eating bugs in favor of a protein-rich, gluten-free diet.
Bitty manufactures cricket flour by freezing, boiling, roasting, and milling the insects then blending them with cassava and coconut, as the New York Times reports. It sells the flour — in which one cup contains 28 grams of protein — along with cookies at its website. A 20-ounce bag of Bitty flour is $20, as opposed to the supermarket stuff that runs a few bucks.
One of Bitty's three founders, Megan Miller, first tasted crickets and mealworms in trips abroad, and eventually quit her job to study insect gastronomy. She's started with crickets because they're commercially farmed in the U.S. and readily available, but there's room to expand into the roughly 2,000 types of edible insects that exist.
Aside from marketing to Paleo and gluten-free dieters, Miller is pushing the fact that insects are a more environmentally sustainable food source, as they're easy to grow and don't take up much in the way of resources like land, food, and water.
Watch Miller make her case that insects are the future of food in the TEDx talk below: