It’s amazing that we’re already a month into 2015, and it is shaping up to be a very exciting year for the ento industry!
Right now in February 2015 there are dozens of restaurants around the country experimenting with insects on their menus - from culinary hubs like San Francisco, Los Angeles, and New York City to more conservatively palated Austin TX, and Youngstown OH. Food startups Exo, Chapul, Hopper Foods, and Bitty Foods are ramping up production of their cricket flour energy bars and baked goods and growing their brick-and-mortar distribution networks in addition to serving up online sales. Exo’s bars are even slated to be included in a snack box served on JetBlue Airlines flights. Boston based Six Foods is preparing to launch their cricket chips, and dozens more new companies are developing products, business plans and marketing strategies to serve edible insects to the Western masses. In Europe, Belgium has approved the sale of insect based products to consumers, and mealworm based meatballs and "chicken" nuggets are available in stores.
As that demand grows, the supply chain is working to keep up. 2014 saw the debut of Next Millenium Farms in Ontario Canada, Big Cricket Farms launch in Youngstown Ohio, and Aspire Food Group’s merger with World Ento to launch a cricket farming operation in Austin Texas, while All Things Bugs in Georgia has landed a valuable Phase II SBIR grant to further development of their cricket powder and further research food safety. Meanwhile we’ve heard that Next Millenium Farms has landed new investment to grow their operation, and we've heard from many more individuals and teams who are excited to become cricket farmers and help rise the tide of this growing industry.
2015 is set to be a pivotal year for our industry as the supply chain develops to support national distribution of products, and consumers begin to see cricket based products on brick and mortar shelves in their own towns. Food trendologists have announced that edible insects are “in”, and food professionals are scrambling to learn more so they can keep up with the movement.
Here at Tiny Farms Inc., we also have some very exciting developments in the pipeline for 2015, and we look forward to sharing more details in the near future.
Get ready for the year of the Cricket!