Gourmet Grubb also owns a popup store that includes savory insect dishes such as insect powder pasta, chickpea black-larvae croquettes, and Mopani worm hummus, to serve alongside its ice cream.
You scream I scream, and we all scream for ice cream, but please, don't scream in fear when you realize that there is an actual ice cream made out of insects. Ice creams are always rewarding to have, especially after a long day of work. But, would you be okay if your ice cream was actually made out of 'bug milk'? South African start-up, Gourmet Grubb, based in Cape Town, is hoping to use ice cream to introduce the public to the world of eating insects, reports CNN. Their luxury ice cream uses EntoMilk, which is a dairy alternative made by blending the larvae of a tropical insect known as the black soldier fly.
To feed the global population of the world in 2050, the UN has predicted that the world will need to double food production. They have also promoted Entomophagy -the consumption of insects by humans- as a sustainable alternative protein source to traditional livestock. So, how did the start-up come up with insect-based ice cream? "We set out to change the way insects were seen, produced and used in the food industry," said Leah Bessa, who co-founded Gourmet Grubb in 2017.
Even though around 1,900 species of insects are estimated to be consumed by humans around the world, it is yet to reach the mainstream of Western cuisine. "We were expecting a lot of push back, however people have been extremely open-minded," Bessa told CNN. "Everybody loves ice cream." They even have different ice cream flavors, and it includes chocolate, peanut butter, and Christmas spices. According to Bessa, EntoMilk has "a slightly earthy undertone" and gives the ice cream "a rich, creamy taste."
Apart from the taste, there are a lot of benefits as well. Bessa says insect ice cream is also high in nutrients. According to Gourmet Grubb EntoMilk is five times higher in protein than dairy. The UN has also stated that insects provide nutrients that are comparable to meat and fish. "Insects are inherently high in fat and protein and minerals," said Bessa. "The black solider fly has protein and fat content comparable to beef, and zinc, iron, and calcium that are much higher than that of beef."
People with lactose intolerance can also dig into this particular product as EntoMilk is also lactose-free and gluten-free, and unlike dairy milk, it does not contain any carbohydrates or sugars. "We decided to focus on an industry [food] that is under a lot of pressure due to animal welfare and environmental concerns," said Bessa. "Insects aren't sentient beings, and they only grow in the conditions in which they thrive, so the farming conditions cater to their animal welfare needs."
Recently, the startup also opened up a popup store, which included savory insect dishes such as insect powder pasta, chickpea black-larvae croquettes, and Mopani worm hummus, to serve alongside its ice cream. "We need to find alternatives that will be able to sustain the growing population and create a sustainable and environmentally friendly farming system," said Bessa. "The only way EntoMilk can truly make a difference and reduce the pressures of traditional dairy is if it is accepted and consumed on a global scale." Currently, Gourmet Grubb's ice cream is only distributed in South Africa, but soon enough, the global edible insect market is predicted to reach $1.2 billion by 2023.