Fish and chirps? Crickets make leap in demand as a protein

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WILLISTON, Vt. (AP) โ€” Farmers are raising alternative livestock they say are more ecologically sound than meat but that are sure to bug some people out: crickets.

Interest in edible insects was fueled by a 2013 report from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

Since then, the number of producers of foods containing crickets โ€” from protein bars to chips and pasta sauce โ€” has jumped from zero to about 20 in the United States, while U.S. cricket farms have grown to about a half dozen.

Tomorrow’s Harvest in Williston, Vermont, is among the new cricket farms that don’t use much space to raise the protein-packed food. Steve Swanson raises the crickets in boxes in his basement and has just started selling cricket protein powder online.

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