The title of this post might throw you off. Crickets and job applications, what do those have to do with anything remotely related to Roger Williams? Well job applications makes sense seeing how I will be out in the real world in just a matter of months (starting to freak out just a little bit). I have started the task of looking for job openings that I can apply to as graduation is just around the corner. It is a pretty stressful task. Finding a job that fits what you want can be difficult, especially in today’s market. I have learned that you have to take some risks and be willing to take whatever comes your way. But more on that topic will come in later posts as the process is just getting started. But crickets? Well, I’ll get to that in a minute.
Last week I had the pleasure to accompany one of my Journalism Professors, Michael Scully, and four of my fellow journalism classmates to Washington, D.C. There, we attended the Planet Forward “Feeding the Planet” conference which we had produced a video for. Our video centered around the idea of oyster farming and aquaculture here in Rhode Island and how a lot of the most innovative technology is being produced and used right here at RWU. For a full recap of the event and our time in D.C. checkout my friend and classmate Nicholle Buckley’s blog post on the topic.
During the conference there were a number of presentations all related to innovations that can help to move our planet forward and to feed the estimated nine billion people that will live on our planet by the year 2050, yeah that’s right — nine billion. The numbers were shocking to me. I came to this conference as a journalism student but learned much more related to the fields of science and sustainability than I had expected to learn. There were Pulitzer prize-winning writers, CEOs of Bayer and Land O’ Lakes and even a woman from Kenya who is trying to clean up the way that food is produced in her country. But one presentation stuck out to me in particular, and here is where the crickets come in.
Harman Johar took the stage to introduce his innovation, crickets. Yes that’s right, the little brown bugs that chirp all night. Johar is using crickets as a food source to grind up into flour that can be used to bake breads and other goods. This idea stuck out to me because of how simple of an idea it really is. Crickets are relatively inexpensive to produce, they do not need a lot of space to grow (they can live on top of each other) and they are so rich in protein and fatty acids (the good kind). These crickets can be brought to nations and areas of the world where food is scarce and used to provide essential nutrients in such a simple manner.
Now I know what everyone is thinking. Crickets…really…No way. I did in fact taste the crunchy little critters. In fact after Harman Johar’s presentation I had to, I could not pass up the opportunity to taste the idea that may just help to save some lives. The verdict? Delicious. The first cricket I tried was a plain unsalted one. While it tasted mainly like a sunflower seed the gross factor of the little legs was there. The second one that I tasted was covered in a teriyaki coating and it really was delicious. It tasted just like teriyaki chicken…just with legs and a crunch of course. But in all seriousness, the crickets weren’t all that bad and if such a simple idea such as this one can help to feed millions, possibly billions, then I am all for it. To learn more about Harman Johar’s crickets visit his website www.WorldEnto.com
To wrap it up, here is the link to a brand new FREE iBook titled “Oyster Farming.” This iBook was another product of our oyster video project and is a multimedia iBook of the same topic. In it you will find history and features about the people who are growing oysters here in Rhode Island. It features both the written word along with videos and slideshows and all of it is original content. A lot of time and hard work went into the book and I highly recommend that everyone checks it out. It can be downloaded with the iBooks app for Mac or iPad and once again it is free! We would love to know what everyone thinks of it.