Quality of cereal-based snacks enriched with edible insects.

Technological and nutritional quality of cereal-based snacks enriched with edible insects.

The hereby research responds to the need of the increasing demand of animal proteins by promoting indirect-entomophagy, the art of eating insects. Today, about 2 persons in every 7 around the world eat insects as a source of high quality proteins and nutrients. Around 1900 species of insects are considered edible mainly in the tropics and a few are already suitable for mass production.

Similar to crustaceans, insects are arthropods; but despite their taxonomy, Westerners react to them adversely and with feeling of disgust. However, in parts of the world where this practice is not well established, recent researches indicate that the acceptance of insects as food improves when their visibility is reduced, for example when insects are used as ingredient into familiar foods.
This project seeks to anticipate the need for scientific and technological-based knowledge necessary to match and support the future trend of edible insect consumption in human diet through their inclusiveness into staple foods. The aim of this project is therefore to examine the effect of the inclusion of a whole insect powder on nutritional quality and technological characteristics of a cereal based snack.

In particular, this study is part of a research that seeks to find optimal food formulation and processing conditions of extruded and 3D printed snacks.