Entomophagy: Food Industry

Granted, there was a stupid bet and plenty of alcohol involved, but I ate a handful of crickets. They tasted slightly salty. I remember it being almost like eating a peanut or crispy piece of popcorn. At that moment, I was converted to entomology. At that time, I did not know that was a fancy word for bug eating. I have been eating bugs ever since. Why did I not start earlier in life? What caused my two decade long knee Jerk revulsion to the idea of consuming that which is a staple for almost eighty percent of the planet? The leadership issue here is the birth of a new industry or the re-birth of an old idea.

The major difference between leaders and managers is that managers do things right; whereas, leaders do the right thing 0. Vinson, personal communication, February 8, 2014). It is time for us to do the right thing by bringing an affordable, nutritious and delicious food to the American table. The monetary benefits are both tangible and intangible. Directly, we can see cost savings in the form of more efficient land use, vertical farming, and reduced cost of goods. The list goes on. Indirectly, we will see the average citizen being able to farm at home, reduce their personal costs for food, and increase their levels of health.

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By just concentrating on the last idea, we can easily see how that would quickly translate into a more efficient work force. We have seen a diverse growth of the food industry. This has happened due to a wide variety of applications of various leadership styles. capГ¤heavy: phage, “to eat” is the consumption of insects as food. This term applies concepts are the Trait approach, the Skills Approach, and the Situational Approach. Morehouse (2013) describes the Trait Approach to leadership by stating it is the sum of eight to ten different personality traits (p. 19).

Originally, it was believed that people were born with a strong prescience of the traits. Later, it has been found that the traits can be developed like any other skill. Some leaders will be much more natural in their application than others. (Morehouse, 2013, p. 20). An example of the Trait approach can be seen in any of the new restaurants opening across our country. The owner or shift manager, walks around the restaurant and introduces himself to the customers. They customers are made to feel welcome immediately which in turn begins to convert them to become regulars.

Should there be any problems, regardless of the level of significance, he is there to fix the situation immediately while still maintaining a sociable atmosphere. Any questions that may arise are answered immediately with a smile and a gracious tone. Being sociable and personable is much more difficult for some people. Those that have a natural penchant for those traits will succeed in attracting more customers and ensuring they become return customers. This results in returning customers increasing venue for the restaurant without having to drive up the owner’s marketing costs.

Happy customers, by word of mouth, will spread news of this enterprise. The transformation from exotic to kitchen staple will begin smoothly and spread quickly. There is also a personal and professional determination demonstrated by the owners. They want their restaurant to be a success. Not only for the monetary return, but for the personal pride they feel when serving their traditional foods in a traditional manner and traditional setting. They wanted to be independent. They wanted to bring part of their culture to America. There was a small, dense population that was already accustomed to the food that helped bolster it.

Morehouse (2013) goes on to explain how the Skills approach can be applied. It has been said that we eat with our eyes first. Watching the sushi chef slice and arrange the food on the plate is definitely part of the experience. However, the skills approach used in preparing traditional foods goes well beyond merely the supervisory level. It permeates all three levels by encompassing the technical skills of actually slicing, cooking, and putting the dish together. The Human Skill that can be en from when the customers are greeted all throughout their dining experience. They are made to feel welcome and all their needs cared for.

Finally, the Conceptual skill is taught to the entire staff by each shift manager. Everyone knows what the restaurant is about. How it achieves the short term and long term goals. It is middle and top management that makes the decisions regarding things like new dishes to offer, new ways to present the ideas to patrons, and what the future of the restaurant will look like. They shape the future with their ideas and impart them to those working at the restaurant through training sessions. By applying what is taught to them, the staff aids in making the vision into a reality.

These skills are taught to newer chefs over and over again. Through this training process, they are made to understand the importance of what they do and how it is done. By enforcing the training of these chefs, it shows the next generation what can be learned. A standard is set that is used to Judge the skill of the newly trained. Finally, we add adapts his leadership style to a situation that is fluid. As with all new ideas, the incorporation of entomology into our daily lives will be met with a variety of obstacles. These can range from the simple revulsion to an intellectual debate. It is the first that we need to conquer.

As with all foods that are newly introduced, there will be an unavoidable acceptance period. Managing this with the goal of shortening it as much as possible is the challenge that lies ahead for us. This needs to be seen through a historical point of view in order to place it in the correct context. Foods like sushi and lobster were once considered gross or food for the poor. After a major shift in ideas, these foods have been embraced by our society and have become an in grained part of our food industry. Neither are considered to belong to the lower class or to be too exotic and thus offensive.

Upon discovering America, Christopher Columbus met many of the Native American tribes. His Journal shows us that they taught him and the early pilgrims which bugs could and could not be eaten. Father Pierre-Jean De Seem, a chronicler of the nineteenth-century recorded that chiefs of various tribes would pull off their shirts and eat whatever bugs were crawling in them while carrying on a conversation (Gordon, 2013, p. 3). There was nothing out of the ordinary in regards to this custom. It was viewed as an additional way to get Irishmen into the body. It was routine. It was accepted. What changed?

Why the change? When did our perception of bug eating change? Why did our perception of bug eating change? As of yet, there is no solid answer for any of these questions. However, there is plenty of conjecture that is supported by common sense and logic. This does not make it accurate, merely accepted and agreed upon. Looking back at the communal history of the human race, we have had a lot of ideas that were accepted by the majority as fact, when they were actually wrong. Honestly, there was a time when we all thought the earth was flat. Early settlers of American lived a lifestyle that was mostly agrarian.

Their future and that of their offspring depended on how well they raised livestock and crops. They were accustomed to the devastation caused by bugs on their crops while in Europe. When they immigrated, they brought this level of anger, frustration and hatred of that which they could not control with them. They held an easily understood sense of condemnation toward bugs that caused their crops and cattle to be killed off faster than it took to raise them. It was easier to castigate bugs and those who ate bugs rather than to find a ewe set of skills for raising and controlling the creatures as we did with all other livestock.

This Situation led to the general consensus that bugs were the enemy and needed to be fought. Additionally, it seems that the idea for killing and destroying bugs stemmed from a real or imagined fear of competition. Eliminating the demand for one product can create a vacuum in a market. Since the need, desire and love of food is never going to be completely destroyed, the farmers simply replaced one source of protein with another. It was a long term marketing scheme that had impacts that no one at that time could imagine. It did not happen immediately. For many years, bugs were part of the American diet.

There were not a staple, but as recently as the sass’s, there were cans of fried bugs sold in many local grocery stores. The picture below from www. Retrenchment. Com shows that this can of fried ants was sold in America. Regardless of which grocery store or mega-mart I visit, I unconsciously agree with them that what they sell in the food sections is edible. There is an unspoken and assumed agreement that when I buy something with the intent of eating it, I will be able to without the fear of disease. The biggest obstacle for this situation in our society still seems to be the yuk’ factor.

In the majority of main-stream American foods, it is reduced to zero. In many ways, our food has become so over processed, that we are losing the farm to fork flavor that other cultures still embrace. We have exchanged it for convenience and immediate gratification. This does not make it better. Most would argue that our food should be less processed in order to preserve the wide variety of vitamins, minerals and genuine earthiness of taste. However, in other cultures, entomology is still a common practice. Bugs are not considered to be exotic.

They are not considered to be eaten only by the poor or by people with strange and adventurous eating habits. They are sold everywhere from small, local, outdoor markets to larger chain grocery stores of the modern, yet foreign, world. It is my opinion that bugs will soon become part of our every day eating habit. As a culture, we are influenced by those immigrants that come to America to enjoy and practice our way of life. With them, come many ideas that, though foreign in nature, are not totally alien. Entomology happens to be a culinary choice for many f them.

We have many examples from our own history of when a kind of food was considered to be of the lower class, but now is accepted and even praised by modern day standards. An excellent example of this is seen in the history of the state of Maine. Looking back to colonial America, the people living in Maine thought of lobster as food for the poor. Lobster was readily available, in that, they were so plentiful that they washed up on shore. Anyone could grab as many as they needed, cook them and eat them. It was considered the food for the poor since it is a bottom dweller. It was served to servants and prisoners.

It was not until the advent of better transportation that lobster was able to make its way to the dinner tables of various restaurants. Slowly, the lowly lobster grew in popularity as a staple in the American diet. Today, it is sold for quite a bit more. It is no longer considered the chicken for the poor. The type of leadership we need here and now is Situational. We need someone that not only has intellectual ability to grasp and explain the many benefits for entomology, but someone with the emotional IQ so as to express the concept in way as to make it appealing to as many people as initially possible. Bodies love food.

They love to love food. They need a leader with the same passion. Someone is needed who can employ both the directive element and the supportive element for the situation (Sparrow, P. & Cooper, C. L. , 2003, et al. ). The most important quality is that the leader be able to match their style to the level of commitment and the level of competence of those they are leading. Many will follow Just because it is an interesting and intriguing idea. Some will follow as a new approach to an old idea. Finally, once the formal and informal schools begin offering classes, we will see a breath through that will lead us to a new age of culinary knowledge.

The actions needed on our part seem to be obvious. We must get over our own timidity. We must embrace new ideas that are forming. This is the leading edge of the food industry. No one will ever stop eating. Everyone wants to be healthy. This food source can healthier for a longer period of time. Finally, others who see the change firsthand will try it at least once. It is upon this momentum that we must build. The many benefits of entomology already exist. Some are obvious, like the fact that bugs take up much less room to grow than another form of barnyard creature.

Insects have much less fact, lower cholesterol and higher levels of protein than most of our mainstream fare. We can grow them in our yards, in our garages, even in our refrigerator. Other facts, though recorded accurately, are not as well known. For instance, bugs produce less methane gas than cattle. This is an aggregate as well as percentile measure. If bugs were as big as cows, they would still produce less methane. The fact is that the average cow releases two pounds of methane into the air per day. There are two salient points that need to be made here.

First, I believe that once it is measured in poundage, farts are no longer a gas. Maybe it is Just me. Second, whose Job is this? ‘Cow fart measurer? Really? Where was that one on career day in high school? But, I digress. Another obvious fact is that it costs significantly less to raise bugs than it does any other farmyard creature. Maelstroms can be raised in a collection of three shoebox or three stackable plastic containers. The size of the container will determine how many bugs can be produced without a significant increase in the mount of food and water.

Shoebox cost less than tractors. Stackable, plastic storage bins cost less than barns. One big container of oatmeal costs less than a winter’s supply of hay. I can go on and on in regards to conservative nature of raising bugs over livestock. Finally, yes, you can raise enough bugs in your home to completely replace any meat product. More importantly, since most of us will never give up meat entirely, bugs can be used to enhance a meal. Scraps and leftovers are the fodder for the next generation of bugs. It is a never ending cycle of efficiency and elf sustained growth. As stated by Dry.

Vinson 0. Vinson, personal communication, February 8, 2014) on the first day of class, the organization must have our first loyalty. The individual will eventually be replaced, but the organization will continue. How it will look will depend on what we do now. What decisions we make now. What programs we put in place as a force for change for the good now. We are the leaders of today and tomorrow. The next generation is still growing. It is time to instill in all of us a new way of thinking, believing and eating. The health benefits are many. The durational information is there.