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1 Jan, 2020 13:42

In 2020 prepare to eat bugs, bags and weed

In 2020 prepare to eat bugs, bags and weed

While haggis, neeps and tatties typically represent the best of Scottish cooking, 2020 has other plans in a culinary clash of evolution, innovation and sustainability.

In a new publication from Zero Waste Scotland, entomophagy (the practice of humans eating insects) could be the future, with the report suggesting that a change from cattle to critters could be lucrative and better for the environment.

Dr William Clark, ZWS’s bio-economy specialist, says that insects would offer a sustainable way to produce more food using less resources: “Insect farms offer a reliable, sustainable, circular-economy solution to the protein gap. For although the world produces enough food for everyone, more than a third of it goes to waste so people don’t get the protein they need.”

With half a million tons of agricultural feedstock thrown away each year, the report also adds that using just 10 percent of that for insect farming would produce almost six million pounds for the Scottish economy.

For those wanting to start their own farm, it’s good to note that in one year bugs produce about 100 times more protein from the same amount of space than you would get by farming sheep or cows, and insects can also produce valuable by-products such as biodiesel, bioplastics and organic fertilizers. But are eco warriors prepared to eat black soldier flies and field crickets in a quest to save the planet?

While the food buzz around creepy critters has been around for a few years, a company in Cape Town suggests you eat your food container, too. Munchbowls are an eco-friendly green alternative to toxic wasteful plastic and polystyrene food containers. Made with biodegradable wheat, they can be stored for up to 15 months, and they are vegan, too.

Meanwhile environmentalists wanting the whole package in 2020 should take note of Avani, a company based in Bali, who have created an edible bag. Made from cassava root starch and other natural resins, they break down within three to six months and can be dissolved or eaten.

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When that diet leads to inevitable suicidal thoughts, why not finish off with a cannabis cookie for desert? The global market for both legal and illegal cannabis stands at $150 billion, and 2020 is set to see that figure steadily grow.

Spiros Malandrakis from market research company Euromonitor says the industry is just at its beginning: “I think in the next two to three years we will start seeing a vast number of other cannabinoids that are not yet under the limelight. There’s a million questions to be asked, and we’re just scratching the surface.”

With unlimited articles, TV shows, forums and celebrities now discussing the positive medical uses of cannabis, it seems the negative reputation of weed-smoking grungy students is slowly morphing into being more socially accepted.

Cannabis is also getting green - with new sustainable cultivation and manufacturing practices used by several companies in America. Manufacturers are now looking at environmentally friendly production methods in regards to irrigation and farming in the hope to appease plant-loving eco warriors.

Whether enjoying an insectivorous diet or eating carrier bags will become a cultural phenomenon for the eco-conscious or not, the roaring twenties will, no doubt, see many fads attempting to become mainstream.

Let’s just hope they taste as good as the ideas themselves.

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