There’s something in this New Yorker article on eating bugs that made a lot of sense to the economist in me. The person-who-eats in me felt differently, for sure. But I have a feeling things and going to head in this direction in our lifetimes, and I think that’s probably a good thing (except, of course, for the insects themselves).
–the opportunity costs in terms of environmental degradation per unit of animal protein are a lot lower for insects than for cattle;
–they are abundant;
–the lifestyles of some commonly edible insects are less gross than you think—compare how a grasshopper lives to how a lobster gets by, for example;
–there’s obviously a huge cultural component here. Lots of people around the globe eat insects. The author tells of dining with a family in Oaxaca that enjoyed grasshoppers but were totally grossed out by shrimp. I remember dining in Southern China a few years ago and someone next to me was loving a big plate of some big-ass beetles.
So I say don’t knock it until you try it…which is easy to say if you haven’t tried it. But I think I would give it a try at this point, assuming they were prepared by someone who knew what they were doing.