Our reliance on meat and abusive treatment of animals is not sustainable. The current coronavirus pandemic is just the latest symptom of a system that is not working. We need to focus on meat alternatives and disease-free farming if we want to make a meaningful change. Here is what we think can be done.
The wet markets were likely the origin of the new coronavirus
Both the new coronavirus and SARS outbreaks likely started in Chinese wet markets, The Guardian reported. Wet markets put people and live and dead animals — dogs, chickens, pigs, snakes, bats, civets, and more — in constant close contact. Breathing, excrements, blood, melting ice, and animal organs all in one place create the ideal conditions for animal suffering, rapid virus mutation, and disease spreading. According to a Business Insider article, bats were the original hosts of the newest mutation of the coronavirus covid-19.
Swine flu, mad cow disease, and super bacteria
It’s not just about bats in China, these viral mutations are something that happens in relation to animals we eat very regularly in the western world too. Swine flu is a good example of that. This mutation of the influenza virus caused an estimated 150,000 – 575,000 deaths during the 2009 pandemic according to a CDC report. Then there’s the mad cow disease. And let’s not forget about the looming threat of super bacteria that are being created largely because of the overuse of antibiotics in factory farming of cattle which we discussed in a previous article. These things will keep happening and will get worse unless the system changes.
We need disease free farming and meat free alternatives
We have to leave the current system behind. We can’t keep relying on mass factory farmed meat in this way. We have to consider all other options that will allow us to feed people a nutritious diet while minimizing animal abuse and risk of infectious diseases. The future is in plant-based meat alternatives, lab grown meat, and diets with a higher proportion of plants. When it comes to farming, edible insects are the best way to keep things safe while providing the same quality protein as meat.
United Nations recommends cricket protein as safe in terms of antibiotics and zoonotic diseases
Insect farming requires no use of antibiotics and can offer a much higher level of safety. Diseases caused by the flu and corona viruses are zoonotic, meaning they are transmitted between animals and people. The good news is that edible insects are safe in terms of zoonotic diseases.
“Because insects are taxonomically much more distant from humans than conventional livestock, the risk of zoonotic infections is expected to be low (1).”
Introducing our farm of the future
That’s why we built our own cricket farm so that we could control the hygienic standards and make sure we are safely producing a highly nutritious food. Edible insects are the only food that provides high-quality protein and essential nutrients like vitamin B12 and heme-iron that plants can’t supply while also posing minimal risk of zoonotic infections.
It goes without saying that crickets are treated much better than most large factory farmed animals even outside of such terrible places as the wet markets. They get natural feed and they also thrive in dense populations in the wild so they have plenty of living space at the farm too.
Try some of our cricket protein bars, pasta, or chocolate blend and be a part of the much-needed system change!
1) FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN), ‘Edible insects – Future prospects for food and feed security’, Rome 2013, http://www.fao.org/docrep/018/i3253e/i3253e.pdf