>> Protein pancakes.>> It's a burgeoning industry, and it's not for the squeamish. More than 100 entrepreneurs and startups gathered in Detroit, Michigan, this Memorial Day weekend, all of them with the same challenging goal, to bring edible insects to the mainstream. Co-founder of Little Herds, Robert Allen, says the first step is getting over the yuck factor.
>> We like to have this form available as a visual, but also to give people that chance to break their own mental hurdle. We don't wanna bully people into eating this. If someone doesn't wanna eat it, that's normal. That's okay. It's just gonna take some time.>> The Eating Insects Conference is billed as the first of its kind to be held in the US, where munching on mealworms and cramming crickets isn't as common as it is in other parts of the world.
Reuters editor in charge for the Midwest, Ben Klayman, attended the conference.>> I'm going to try my first crickets. These have been spiced. It does tastes like sort of sunflower seeds or something like that.>> The growing need for more food sources, as well as the movement to treat animals more humanely, have proponents predicting that eating insects, also known as entomophagy, will eventually spread to western and developed countries.
>> Cricket granolas, cricket protein bars, cricket salt.>> According to a 2013 United Nations report, with the world's population growth showing food production will need to almost double by 2050, people will need to check their revulsion at the door and give bugs a second look.