Every week, and sometimes every day new articles are released about the NEW superfood. While this can feel bombarding and loosely thrown around as a term, the potential impact makes it well worth it in our opinion. From what started with an announcement in 2016 (article from NPR https://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2016/08/06/488861223/cockroach-milk-yes-you-read-that-right) is making headlines again…Cockroach Milk.
Cockroach Milk: The New Superfood?
As an edible insect company we get to hear a lot of consumer opinions about different types of edible insects, different product forms, etc. And cockroach milk is no different and even more polarizing than our own products made from roasted crickets and roasted mealworms. It turns out Ben Stiller’s character from “Meet the Parents” would hardly be surprised with this development (clip from the movie https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bXNwzKo5Yps).
What is Cockroach Milk?
Cockroach milk is a nutrient dense, crystalline or liquid milk produced from the brood sac of female cockroaches to feed live young. So it turns out you can actually milk cockroaches.
Researchers found that the milk can be extracted, although with some inefficiencies, and that it is a surprising great source of calorie rich nutrients and minerals (here is a full research paper on their findings http://journals.iucr.org/m/issues/2016/04/00/jt5013/). So the crystalline structures have proteins, sugars, and fats that are designed to feed the growing young and could be a potential superfood of the future.
But there is a lot more research that is needed before we can say for sure this is the new superfood of the future. Will the final product be known and referred to as Cockroach Milk? Hopefully not, and hopefully they come up with a new friendly term to get more people on board. But I know we look forward to seeing more research into the nutrition and commercialization for this new type of food ingredient.