Woven Newsletter No.5 – March 2016

Three weeks until the Woven/RES conference, Insects as Food and Feed: The Way Forward. There are still a few tickets for sale, and we have now released a preliminary programme on the event page, full details here.

Thanks again to Dr Rozin for an insightful talk and discussion last month on the disgust factor of eating insects, and for Christian and Meghan for organising the EntoCall, which we were proud to sponsor. You can read some of the coverage here and here, and if you are interested in a transcript of the call drop me an email.

Lastly – in case you missed it, BUGSfeed have launched a directory of stores and restaurants on their website. Make sure your organisation is listed, or if like me you don’t sell insects, make sure you check out what’s on offer near you.

— Harold Stone (Editor)

Woven RES Conference - Sutton Bonnington

Conference Programme

Industry and insects: normalising insects as livestock
Ilkka Taponen (Gold and Green Food)
“Risk management in high-scale insect farming”

Mark Ramsden (ADAS UK)
“Competing in supply chains: how will entomophagy meet retail standards of reliability, sustainability, and scale of supply?”

Fred McVittie (Cornish Edible Insects)
“Making insect farming visible”

Psychological acceptance and moving entomophagy forward

Edward Barnes (Minerva Comms, PROteINSECT)
“Insect protein – acceptability, risk and impact…what consumers really think”

Robert Murdock (University of Nottingham, Bingham & Jones)
“The value of information when developing insect based products”

Indroneel Chatterjee & Janine Dermody (Oxford Brookes University)
“Neuro-marketing disgusting dung beetles and repugnant roaches”

Business showcase
Tony Askins, Yumpa
Josh Bentham, The Natural Grub Company
Constance Deseine, JIMINI’S

(With insect treats provide by Crobar, Yumpa, The Natural Grub Company, JIMINI’S)

Panel discussion:
Speakers TBC
“How can the research and business communities involved in insects for food and feed support one another?”

Click here for full programme details and tickets

Insect News


Paul Vantomme has left the FAO. For those of you unfamiliar with Paul, he is the person behind the landmark 2013 United Nations report on edible insects and the corresponding Edible Insects Stakeholder Directory.

His departure has been discussed here by Ana Day and here by Entomofago.


Cricket farming has been getting competitive, especially in the United States. Tiny Farms recently managed to attract investment from Arielle Zuckerburg.

Two weeks later Exo managed to raise $4 million, along with celebrity endorsements from rapper Nas and athlete Amelia Boone.

Ilkka Taponen has been researching patents related to insect rearing, to help assess the size and scope of the industry. There are a surprising number of patents coming from China. Ilkka will be talking about risk management at our conference in April.



Kenya has been establishing itself as a hub for edible insects. JOOUST’s African Centre of Excellence for Edible Insects will be funded by the World Bank for the next five years. It is the first among several programmes that the university is planning to establish across the country – read more.

Among the variety of products to enter the market in the last month, cricket pasta has been making headlines. See more herehere and here.

And lastly, those of you working on mealworms might find this pudding from South Korea interesting:

Mealworm Pudding


Little Herds have been highlighting the important issue of biodiversity and over-harvesting, which you can read more on here.

Following from Bob Fischer’s thought provoking paper Bugging the Strict Vegan, the ethics of eating insects was the focus of and article in Food52 – Are Bugs Vegetarian?


PROteINSECT have their concluding conference on April 26 in Brussels. They will be presenting three years worth of international findings and results. This is definitely not one to miss if you are working on insects as feed. Book your free ticket here.

Lastly, outside of feed there have been two interesting developments for using insects industrially – as biofuel and as plastic.

Nick Rousseau

Tasting Event in Sheffield

An insect entrepreneur has approached me to arrange a couple of  “evenings of entomophagy” in Sheffield at a small community venue.

The idea is to have a talk and/or film combined with an opportunity to do some cooking with insect material and eat some items made from insect material, and to have a discussion about this.

We are looking for people who could work with us, providing products, ingredients for cooking with etc. We will charge participants so should be able to cover costs. If you would like to get involved please email Nick at nick.rousseau@woven-network.co.uk

— Nick Rousseau


April 11
Insects as Food and Feed: The Way Forward (Nottingham)
Joint meeting of Woven Network, Royal Entomological Society at the University of Nottingham.

April 11
EFSA Novel Foods Stakeholder and Public Consultation (Brussels)
Public consultation on two draft guidance documents in the area of novel foods

April 26
Insect Protein Feed for the Future (Brussels)

PROteINSECT will present its international work, findings and results

June 20-26
National Insect Week
Organised by the Royal Entomological Society every two years

Leave a Reply