SEATTLE, April 27, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Swapping pork and beef for crickets and locusts could help to save the planet by reducing livestock green house gas (GHG) emissions by up to 95 percent, a recent study has revealed. FoodServiceWarehouse.com studied research and created an infographic on the production of GHG of cows and pigs against a selection of everyday insects
FoodServiceWarehouse.com found that if pig and cattle livestock were measured against insects for their GHG production by grams per kilogram of mass gain, beef cattle produce on average a huge 2,850 CO2 equivalent (eq) and pigs create 1,139 of CO2.
By comparison, the humble cricket produces a tiny 1.57 CO2, whilst locusts and sun beetles equate to just 17.72 CO2 eq and 121.86 CO2 eq, respectively. Not only are they more eco-friendly, but many insects are also very nutritious – they have twice the protein of meat and fish, whilst being rich in unsaturated fat.
In many parts of Asia insects such as beetles and crickets are part of everyday cuisine, and it may be time for the US to start consider sweet & sour crickets and locust-burgers, especially a with a recent study from the Food and Agriculture Organization showing that the livestock produces more GHG than the transport sector.
The livestock farming contribution of GHG to global warming is huge, with 35-40 percent of the Earth's methane, 65 percent of the Earth's nitrous oxide and 9 percent of the Earth's carbon dioxide being attributed to the industry. Methane is emitted from enteric fermentation in ruminants and from farm animal manure, while nitrous oxide comes from farm manure and urine.
Ashley Howard at FoodServiceWarehouse.com, said: "The farming of insects would be a more sustainable and affordable form of meat production. It may sound crazy, but with the huge impact that livestock is having on GHG – in much the same way as the burning of fossil fuels – we need to come up with other viable options. By presenting this data we hope we've at least raised some awareness to the effect that livestock production has on our environment."
Ashley continues: "Are we going to drop everything and start selling cricket fryers and beetle grillers? Not likely. However, we do provide as much eco-friendly restaurant equipment we can, and when you consider that the worldwide consumption of pork and beef is expected to double by 2020, it might not be such a crazy statement."
Infographic and embedding code can be found here: http://www.foodservicewarehouse.com/education/going-green/eating-insects-the-most-eco-friendly-meat.aspx
Notes to editors
About FoodServiceWarehouse.com and their green credentials
Founded in 2006, FoodServiceWarehouse.com is the industry's one-stop shop for high-quality restaurant equipment, brand-name supplies and educational resources for the conscientious foodservice operator. The company offers over 250,000 products from 300 brands, including hundreds of products that reduce operating costs through conservation.
The Certified Green Commercial Kitchen Program™
FoodServiceWarehouse.com created the industry's first free green certification program aimed at helping commercial kitchen operators slash energy costs, conserve water and reduce their environmental impact. To learn more, please visit http://www.foodservicewarehouse.com/going-green/certified-kitchen.aspx
The following sources were used for research: