Seven in ten people unwilling to eat edible insects in order to save the planet, study finds


Seven in ten people unwilling to adopt a ‘bushtucker trial’ diet – including insects such as mealworms – in order to save the planet, study finds

  • Food Standards Agency carried out survey on foods seen better for environment
  • Results found 67% of people said ‘nothing could make them try edible insects’
  • 13% said they could be persuaded and 11% would if they ‘looked appetising’
  • While 37 per cent were willing to try insects if they were ground up into food 


<!–

<!–

<!–
<!–

<!–
(function (src, d, tag){ var s = d.createElement(tag), prev = d.getElementsByTagName(tag)[0]; s.src = src; prev.parentNode.insertBefore(s, prev); }(“https://www.dailymail.co.uk/static/gunther/1.17.0/async_bundle–.js”, document, “script”));

<!– DM.loadCSS(“https://www.dailymail.co.uk/static/gunther/gunther-2159/video_bundle–.css”);

<!–

Seven in ten people are unwilling to adopt a ‘bushtucker trial’ diet – including insects such as mealworms – in order to save the planet.

The findings come from a study into alternative foods such as insects, meat grown in a laboratory and plant-based proteins, that are seen as better for the environment than meat and dairy.

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) survey found 67 per cent of people said ‘nothing could make them try edible insects’, 13 per cent could be persuaded if they knew it was safe to eat, 11 per cent would if they ‘looked appetising’ and 37 per cent were willing to try insects ground up into food. 

Seven in ten people are unwilling to adopt a ‘bushtucker trial’ diet – including insects such as mealworms – in order to save the planet. Pictured, edible crickets and mealworms

Seven in ten people are unwilling to adopt a ‘bushtucker trial’ diet – including insects such as mealworms – in order to save the planet. Pictured, edible crickets and mealworms

Seven in ten people are unwilling to adopt a ‘bushtucker trial’ diet – including insects such as mealworms – in order to save the planet. Pictured, edible crickets and mealworms

‘Bushtucker trials’ were made famous by TV show I’m a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here, in which contestants are forced to eat creepy crawlies.

The FSA said it is working to ensure people can enjoy ‘innovative food… whilst still having full confidence in their safety’. 

While six in 10 respondents were willing to try plant-based proteins in their diet, the biggest barrier was a preference for traditional meats (36 per cent), the poll results showed.

Of those who said they were unwilling to try lab-grown meat, 27 per cent said they could be persuaded if they knew it was safe to eat and 23 per cent if they could trust that it was properly regulated. 

FSA chief scientific adviser Professor Robin May said the findings show the importance consumers place on the safe and proper regulation of food.

The watchdog said it wants to reiterate its commitment to supporting food innovation, especially if there are potential benefits for people’s health, for the environment or for boosting the economy.

Prof May said: ‘Our priority is to protect consumer interests by ensuring food is safe and what it says it is through a robust scientific process. We recognise the potential of alternative proteins for improving dietary health and as part of a sustainable food system.

‘This important survey highlights that, while many consumers are considering trying alternative proteins, they will quite rightly only do so if they are confident that these products are safe and properly regulated.

‘Consequently, we are working closely with businesses and trade bodies to ensure they make effective use of the FSA’s existing regulatory framework so that consumers can benefit from innovative food products whilst still having full confidence in their safety.’

‘Bushtucker trials’ were made famous by TV show I’m a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here, in which contestants are forced to eat creepy crawlies. Pictured, Simon Gregson takes part in a trial during last year's series

‘Bushtucker trials’ were made famous by TV show I’m a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here, in which contestants are forced to eat creepy crawlies. Pictured, Simon Gregson takes part in a trial during last year's series

‘Bushtucker trials’ were made famous by TV show I’m a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here, in which contestants are forced to eat creepy crawlies. Pictured, Simon Gregson takes part in a trial during last year’s series

Of the almost 2,000 people who took part in the survey, 90 per cent had heard of plant-based proteins, while 80 per cent were familiar with edible insects, and 78 per cent with lab-grown meat.

While a majority (77 per cent) perceived plant-based proteins as being safe to eat, this dropped to half for edible insects and 30 per cent for lab-grown meat.

Around 34 per cent of people said they were willing to try the latter, while 26 per cent said they would try edible insects.

Of those who said they were willing to try plant-based proteins in their diet, the most common reasons were because they thought it was safe to eat (44 per cent), for health reasons (39 per cent), or environmental or sustainability (36 per cent) reasons.

The FSA said it will bring key industry stakeholders together later this year to consider how businesses can be supported in entering the alternative proteins market.  

Advertisement

Shop Women Clothes | Shop Celebrity Approved Women Activewear