The Netherlands Embassy in Washington, D.C., United States

Discussion, Tasting to Focus on Insects as Sustainable Food Source for People

(Washington, D.C.) – Many people see insects as a nuisance. Others see them as a wonder of nature. But could they also be a sustainable food source?

With the chorus of the Brood II cicadas upon us, the Royal Netherlands Embassy will host a discussion at 4 p.m. June 26, 2013, on the topic of insects as a sustainable food source for people. After the discussion, guests will be able to snack on a few bug bites themselves, including cicadas.

The discussion will feature three experts in entomology and entomophagy, or the human consumption of insects as food:

  • Dr. Marcel Dicke, Chair and Head of Department of the Laboratory of Entomology at Wageningen University (the Netherlands), and co-author of the Dutch-language “Het Insectenkookboek” (“The Insect Cookbook”), an English version of which is scheduled to be released in America this fall.
  • Daniella Martin, host of GirlMeetsBug.com, an insect cooking and travel website, and bug blogger for The Huffington Post. She has also recently signed a book deal with Amazon Publishing to write a book about eating insects.
  • Dr. Michael Raupp, professor of entomology at the University of Maryland and host of BugoftheWeek.com.

After their presentations, a reception will follow featuring a sampling of bugs prepared by Daniella Martin. The menu will include crickets, mealworms and cicadas.

According to a new report by researchers at Wageningen University and the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization, “Edible Insects: Future Prospects for Food and Feed Security,” insect farming can be compared to mini livestock farming. It is environmentally friendly, does not require much land, and produces high-quality nutrients.

“As the world’s population continues to grow and our natural resources and land available for farming decrease, we must find alternative food sources,” said Ambassador Rudolf Bekink. “Insects could provide a nutritional alternative for people without the massive use of natural resources. Researchers at Wageningen University are studying this very topic. The Netherlands is at the forefront in research and technology in the field of food and nutrition sector, offering top knowledge and expertise in every part of the integrated food chain.”

The Royal Netherlands Embassy invites discussion on this topic to begin exploring the attitudes and social mores that exist among Westerners, particularly in the United States.

The event will take place at 4 p.m. Wednesday, June 26 at the Royal Netherlands Embassy, 4200 Linnean Ave. NW, Washington, D.C.

Members of the press wishing to attend the event, or watch as Daniella prepares the insects before the event, should email Carla Bundy or call 202-274-2632.

Follow the event on Twitter using #BugAppetit.

For the latest news on the Dutch food and nutrition sector, check out HollandFoodPartner.com.