It’s Not Just Crickets, It’s Being A Startup With Triple Impact
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It’s Not Just Crickets, It’s Being A Startup With Triple Impact

Photo by:   Francisca Castellanos
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By Francisca Castellanos - Crick Super Foods
CEO and Founder

STORY INLINE POST

The industry for alternative proteins like cricket protein is increasing daily because the consumer is aware of their nutritional and environmental importance. Crick Superfoods is a triple impact startup that is seeking to improve nutrition by offering  clean-label food products and decreasing environmental pollution by using cricket powder. An important example is  eliminating malnutrition in Ecuador. We have made an alliance with Quito Food Bank (QFB), a nongovernmental organization (NGO) that receives, prepares and provides food for homeless people in different shelters and foundations.  

The nutritional impact of our products is illustrated by the fascinating characteristics that cricket protein powder provides. Its high fiber content and complete amino-acid profile, among other components necessary for good nutritional health (Vázquez 2019), are becoming increasingly  known. Moreover, we are a clean-label brand that does not use any preservative or colorant in the product, and  our clients, “Crick Lovers,” can easily see each of the ingredients when they read the label. It is important to keep in mind that crickets have 66 percent protein per100 grams in contrast to pigs, which have around 21 percent (Pulido et al. 2020; Peña y Reyes 2021). Crickets are also high in iron, calcium and have nine amino acids. 

Second, the environmental impact of breeding crickets is important due to the low consumption and demand for resources, the use of space, and the lower generation of CO2 during the production process (Peña & Reyes 2021) compared to other animal proteins. We use cricket powder as part of the raw material for our products because it is considered one of the most sustainable proteins based on its low impact on global warming: 70 percent less use of space, 80 times less CO2 than a cow. Our indoor vertical cricket farm has the necessary characteristics to contribute ecologically to the consumption of animal protein, by developing an activity that optimizes space and resources, reduces the consumption of water and food from monocultures, and generates much less waste, which can even be reused, as fertilizers and in compost for gardens and orchards.

Third, Crick Superfoods ensures it has a social impact by donating 5 percent of the total monthly sales of its cricket tortilla chip nachos to the Quito Food Bank (QFB). QFB works with 33 other companies nationally that donate perishable and non-perishable food for redistribution to different shelters or refugees, homeless or any vulnerable group. In addition to this, they transform the food into other processed products. For example, if a fruit company donates 850 apples and those apples are mature, they transform them into jelly. Crick Superfoods has been working with QBA since December 2021. During that time, we have donated more than 150 kg of product, benefiting more than 550 homeless people who visit QBA’s community shelters.  

The  consumption of our cricket tortilla chips, for example, helps  decrease the malnutrition in our country, positively impacting the vulnerable population, such as the  homeless. Our cricket tortilla chips contain 20 percent protein, or four times more protein than any other snack  on the market. It is also affordable for and a good option for those people who need protein products to boost their health. 

In conclusion, there are brands whose aim is not just to market a specific product but also to transcend by generating a mindset change  among consumers as Crick Superfoods does in terms of nutrition and environmental and social. factors. Your cricket tortilla chips have triple impact! We can realize many  positives by  breeding and consuming crickets, or in general, almost any type of insect. There are secondary products generated by breeding crickets, both for the environment and for our society. You can benefit vulnerable communities and contribute to improving nutrition in our society by joining this new food and environmental trend with your snack choices. What are you waiting for? f Join our community and CRICK Superfoods!

In collaboration with: Carlos Picho-Paucar

Sources

Peña C. & Reyes M. (2021). ANÁLISIS DE LA PROTEÍNA A BASE DE GRILLO COMO SUSTITUTO NUTRICIONAL DE LA PROTEÍNA TRADICIONAL. https://repository.icesi.edu.co/biblioteca_digital/bitstream/10906/88982/1/TG03266.pdf

Pulido V., González C., Tapia Y. & Celis X. (2020). Insectos: Recursos del pasado que podrían ser una solución nutricional para el futuro. http://ww.ucol.mx/revaia/portal/pdf/2020/mayo/6.pdf 

Vázquez A. (2019). La harina de grillo: proteína del futuro. https://www.mentta.com/blog/harina-de-grillo/#:~:text=La%20harina%20de%20grillo%20contiene,organismo%20y%20la%20recuperaci%C3%B3n%20muscular  

Photo by:   Francisca Castellanos

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