Insects are a good source of food supply in both humans and animals. This is why reports of various nutrient contents are often researched and found in fields of most disciplines varying from zoology to anthropology. A primary application of such nutrient contents of insects, especially the House Cricket, is utilized as an essential nutritional food source for human beings.
More than 2,000 species in the insect world are acknowledged to be fit to be eaten. A number of evidence from ancient archeological sites proves that such insects have always been and are still an essential human food resource. In this article, we will primarily study about the Nutrient Content of the House Cricket, also called Acheta Domesticus in Latin.
Why are insects eaten?
There are a number of advantages to taking up insects as a source of food. In comparison to livestock, breeding of insects is a better environment-friendly action, due to land use, water pollution, and lesser greenhouse gas discharges.
Consumption of house cricket proves to be a more efficient form of feed conversion. The increase in population growth all over the world augments the requirement of good sources of protein but is hardly met due to the limited amount of on hand farmland.
Additionally, the economic advantages of consuming insects in comparison to the plant’s cultivation must be taken into account. For instance, collecting insects in Mexico for human eating decreased the extent of pesticides being used in agricultural production, along with a lessened economic burden on the farmers.
Why is the house cricket or Acheta Domesticus bred and eaten?
Although the tradition of using insects is not much common in every country nowadays, these insects continue to be a good source of nutrition in many cultures over the world.
The house cricket or Acheta Domestica is mostly found to be bred and eaten through appropriate farming conditions in Europe. Whilst the house cricket is sometimes eaten in its raw form, most of the time they are processed and consumed by human beings typically by roasting, drying, frying, or boiling.
In addition, the dietary composition of such cultured insects like the house cricket has been researched and used as a food source to captivated insectivorous reptiles, mammals, or birds, which are kept in the zoos.
What is the nutritional content of the house cricket?
The nutritional elements in different insects and their different stages differ. Hence, there is no generalization of such data relating to their nutritional content. Analysis of the insects is made based on their level of protein, moisture, fat, fiber, and ash.
It has been found that whole and raw insects by and large hold 55-85% of moisture. On the other hand, the whole insects containing a lower content of moisture are normally the ones that have a higher fat content. The insects developed for human eating, in general, hold lesser moisture in comparison to the raw insects due to their processing, which typically engages some form of drying so as to prolong their shelf life.
House crickets are one of the most commonly consumed insects all over the world. These are more commonly farmed by cultivators in Thailand. This breed of house crickets is more well-liked than the native breed of cricket species attributable to its better quality texture and taste. The house cricket is typically consumed as a deep fried food snack and is sold off as a protein extract or as a protein powder.
On an average, the list below would give an estimate of what the house cricket is composed of in terms of its nutritional content:
- Protein: 63 grams
- Fat: 19 grams
- Iron: 5.9 mg
- Omega 3 fatty acids: 0.25 grams
- Fiber percentage: 10.2%
- Ash percentage: 3.6 %
To conclude, the house cricket or Acheta Domesticus is a completely well rounded edible insect and can be relied on for long periods. Due to the overpopulation issue all over the world, most people have taken to the consumption of alternatives to livestock and plant-based food sources. Insect farming is quite a popular concept nowadays, which has driven a number of farmers to a better crop cultivation, devoid of fertilizers.