The edible insects market in the United States has shown promising growth in recent years, increasing from six million dollars to about eight million dollars between 2017 and 2018. Although one would be hard pressed to find edible insects in the vast majority of U.S. grocery stores, this is expected to change in the coming years. The market for flour, protein bars, and snacks made from insects is projected to reach 50 million dollars by 2023.
One of the main benefits of cultivating edible insects is that they require fewer resources than traditional protein sources for the same quantity of protein. While producing one gram of protein from beef requires 254 square meters of farmland, producing a gram of protein from insects requires only 18 square meters. Producing one gram of protein from beef uses 112 liters of water, while one gram of protein from crickets only requires 2 liters of water. The numbers speak for themselves.
In the United States, attitudes are surprisingly positive in regards to willingness to try edible insects. A 2018 survey found that 72 percent of Americans would probably or definitely eat insects in the future. Among these adventurous diners, 22 percent would prefer to consume their edible insects in the form of a snack, while 5 percent would prefer to eat whole insects as a main entrée, without any effort to disguise their true nature.