Edible insects are consumed across various regions as they are rich in various nutrients such as amino acids and essential minerals. Wasps, ants, bees, beetles, scale insects, cockroaches, flies, termites, crickets, and grasshoppers are some edible insects. They are also used across the aquaculture and poultry industries. Edible insects are roasted and dried to produced various low-calorie and nutritious food and beverage products.
The global edible insects market is projected to surpass US$ 850 million by the end of 2027, in terms of revenue, growing at CAGR of 6.7% during the forecast period (2020 to 2027).
The advantage such as low cost of investment as compared to other conventional livestock such as pork, beef, and chicken is expected to augment the market growth of edible insects. Rising demand for protein-rich food products such as protein bars and snacks due to rising health consciousness among consumers is also expected to accelerate the market growth of edible insects over the forecast period.
Easy availability coupled with the increasing production of edible insects is expected to accelerate the market growth over the forecast period. Farming and harvesting of edible have significantly increased in the last few years due to rising awareness regarding the health benefits of the edible insects. This is projected to impact market growth positively over the forecast period.
Regionally, Asia-pacific dominated the global edible insects market in 2019, reporting 33% market share in terms of revenue, followed by Middle East & Africa and Latin America, respectively.
Figure 1. Global Edible Insects Market, Revenue Share (%), By Region, 2019
Human consumption of edible insects is limited to certain regions since it is considered as a taboo. This is expected to hinder the market growth of the edible insects.
Lack of a legal blueprint for the consumption of edible insects coupled with the lack of distribution channel is some of the factors expected to restrict the market growth of edible insects.
Increasing demand for mixed insect’s packs that entails various edible insects is expected to augment the market growth of the edible insects. The mixed insect's packs usually contain mealworms, crickets, and cockroaches that are packed in deli cups and this is considered under ready-to-eat food products. Thus, the rising demand for mixed insect packs will favor market growth.
The growing use of edible insects as a coloring agent across various food products is projected to foster the market growth of the edible insects over the forecast period. For example, cochineal is an insect used to color strawberry and other food products such as donuts, cakes, and pies. Cochineal extract is a natural ingredient and is FDA approved for use across various food products.
Figure 2. Global Edible Insects Market – Opportunity Analysis
Growing cases of livestock disease are creating demand for edible insects which is further expected to fuel the market growth over the forecast period. The growing demand for cricket flour which is gluten-free which can be used for producing various food products is further expected to propel the market growth over the forecast period.
Increasing demand for invertebrates for treating malnutrition since edible insects are easy to digest is expected to foster market growth. The rising trend of consuming powder form of edible insects in pizza and other food products for enhancing the taste is estimated to accelerate the market growth.
Figure 3. Global Edible Insects Market, Revenue Share (%), By Insect Type, In 2019
On the basis of insect type, beetles dominated the global edible insects market in 2019 with around 30% of market share in terms of revenue, followed by caterpillar and hymenoptera, respectively.
Key players are operating in the global edible insects market are Thailand Unique, Kreca, Nordic Insect Economy Ltd., Entomo Farms, Enviro Flight,LLC, Proti-Farm, Exo Inc., Entotech, Deli Bugs Ltd., and Eat Grub Ltd.
Few Recent Developments
Edible insects are available in roasted, dried and powdered form and are used as low calorie ingredient for nutritious food & beverage preparations. Commonly available insects include grasshoppers, bees, ants, crickets, and wasps. These products are predominantly used for preparing nutrient supplements, healthy snacks, protein bars, and trans-fat flours because of their indistinctive taste and efficient bounding properties.
The global edible insects market has witnessed significant growth in recent past years, owing to the rise in farming and culturing of insects owing to lower cost of investment coupled with rise in cases of disease in livestock is making consumers aware for safe and economical edible insect products. Along with this, easy availability, cheaper farming and advance processing techniques is fuelling the popularity among consumers across the globe.
Major players in the global edible insects market are increasing their investment on innovative product launchings, research & development and marketing & promotional activities to capitalize on emerging trends in food & beverage industry. This scenario is expected to fuel the market during the forecast period.
Key features of the study:
“*” marked represents similar segmentation in other categories in the respective section.