Popular supermarket Aldi is considering selling edible insects to help families struggling with the cost of living crisis.
The supermarket giant, known for its cheap prices, is weighing up stocking insect recipe kits to give customers the choice to chow down on a cricket or two.
Aldi, if it sees it through, would stock Yum Bug’s insect recipe kits, founded by Aaron Thomas and Leo Taylor.
The duo, both 28, beat off hundreds of applicants to appear on Channel 4 ’s ‘Aldi’s Next Big Thing’ tomorrow. If they win they could soon see their product on Aldi shelves across the UK.
Speaking out about their hopes for success, Mr Thomas has said they want to take insects “mainstream”.
Mr Thomas, from Islington, London, said: “We’re on a mission to change perceptions of insects as food; they’re one of the most sustainable protein sources in the world.
“Crickets are up to 70 per cent protein, which is three times the amount of protein found in beef. They’ve also got more iron than spinach, more calcium than milk, and the list keeps going. They are an incredible superfood.
“We want to take bug consumption mainstream. If we’re able to get in front of Aldi’s audience, that would be an amazing opportunity.”
Mr Taylor said: “Aaron and I have been cooking with insects for years – it started in 2017 with weekends experimenting out of my parents’ garage, cooking up all sorts of recipes and posting content online.
“We then sold our first insect recipe boxes out of our bedrooms in lockdown, and that’s really where everything snowballed.”
If successful, Brits could pick up some crickets to add to their favourite dish or garnish their dinner next time they sit down with family.
The United Nations say that the market for edible insects could be worth £4.6 billion by 2030, and two billion people already eat the little critters as part of their diet.
But because of Brexit, there were temporarily no laws regulating the consumption of insects in the UK, meaning they were outlawed on a technicality.
This left companies like Horizon Insects being forced to kill off 100kgs of mealworms and stop sales.
But this summer, the Foods Standard Agency set out plans to get them back onto the market.
This in turn meant that six insects – lesser mealworm, house cricket, yellow mealworm, banded or decorated cricket, migratory locust – were back on the menu, opening the door to them appearing on Aldi’s shelves.
The two businessmen will appear on the show, hosted by Anita Rani and Chris Bavin for the six-part TV series.
It will see suppliers compete in categories like dinners, baked goods, treats and store cupboard essentials.
They will present to Julie Ashfield, the Managing Director of Buying at Aldi UK, who will whittle down the contestants before they make their final pitch to her, deciding which products appear in store.