Universität der Künste, Germany
“There are about eight billion humans on this planet today, and the world’s population is growing at an ever-increasing rate. The Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations FAO predicts that by 2050 there will probably be 10 billion humans on earth. Food cultures, especially those of the western world, are changing only slowly. Meat and fish as a nutritious source of protein are deeply embedded in us. We speak of habits, customs, perhaps even tradition. Nowadays, the question arises as to what we will use to substitute the meat and fish in our diet, which also conforms with our newly heightened standards for sustainability and ecological balance.
For some time now, we humans have known exactly what we are doing to the animals and our planet through the mass animal husbandry celebrated in our current western food culture. Two billion people, however, have already integrated insects into their diet. Because they come with nutritious and sustainable advantages. Insects can convert nutrients better and are very rich in protein. For example, twelve times less feed is needed for one kilogram of edible crickets than for one kilogram of beef. The water requirement for a kilogram of crickets is also much lower at 2,500 litres compared to beef at 22,000 litres. In addition, the edible portion of most insect species is 80 per cent, compared to only about 40 per cent for beef. Insects also take up ten times less space than beef and reproduce extremely rapidly in comparison. But it is not only the ecological balance of insects that is convincing; the nutritional values in particular stand out. Some grasshoppers contain more than twice as much protein as beef or chicken. As protein suppliers, insects even surpass nuts, legumes and cereals.
The FAO expects insects to play a significantly important role in feeding the world’s population in the future.
There are about 2000 species of insects that would be suitable for human consumption. 2000 fully-fledged alternatives our planet is offering us.
We simply can’t hold on to our current food culture any longer. The circumstances of the world we live in are constantly changing. And it does so incessantly. Don’t we want to create change? Be the change? With TANTE EMMA I want to shed a light onto a more sustainable and nutritious food culture. I want to encourage active engagement between project and viewer, and the systems in which they exist. TANTE EMMA deliberately provokes a future food culture to make a statement. It makes it visible and discussable. It aims to provoke change.