The Most Common Edible Insects In Africa

People who inhabit the continent of Africa have been feasting on insects for centuries. Therefore, it should not be surprising to learn that some of the most detailed edible insect recipes have come out of African countries. There are well over fifteen hundred edible insect species that currently dwell across Africa. This high amount of edible insect species is largely due to the continent’s tropical climate. As time goes on, and edible insects become more acceptable to westerners, a booming edible insect economy will take form in Africa. Surprisingly, the edible insect industry is already taking off in some African regions. In the future, Africa may become the primary producer and exporter of edible insects.

The insect consumption market in Africa is already quite sizeable. For example, the annual trade value of the Mopane worm in southern Africa is valued at over eighty five million dollars. The Mopane worm is just one of several popular edible insects on the continent. If all of the most popular edible insects on the continent were taken into account, the annual trade value of these insects would be astronomical. Other popular edible insects include grasshoppers, crickets and termites. Also, the supply and availability of certain edible insects is dependent on the seasons. This makes edible insects particularly valuable on local markets during the off-season. Of course, some insects are easier to catch than others.

Grasshoppers, locusts, and crickets are the most commonly consumed types of edible insects due to their relatively wide availability. These insects are abundant and easy to catch, and they contain significant amounts of protein as well as essential fatty acids. Palm weevil larvae is also commonly consumed in Africa, but it is relatively difficult to come by as the larvae must be collected from hatched eggs that are located within palm tree bark. Hopefully, African nations will capitalize on the natural abundance of edible insects within the environment.

Do you think that American entrepreneurs should look into investing in edible insect businesses that are based in Africa?

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