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Facts about Edible Mealworms

The following information applies to mealworms raised for human consumption in western diets - either as whole insects or as ingredients (powders and oils). Information specific to Planet Bugs is marked in italics.

Sourcing:

Grown in the US, Canada, UK, and across the EU

Genetic Modification: currently none, but in R&D 

Available as whole insects, powders, and oils

Powder either ground whole or defatted into a concentrate; no isolate in market

Oils not yet in market, but in R&D as potential replacement for Palm Oil

Processing methods: various chemical and mechanical
Hardy - can grow in most conditions, typically grown indoors in stacked trays
R&D limited, underdeveloped source


Functional Properties:

Solubility: variable - low values at neutral pH (20-30%), but moderate 60-70% at 11-12 pH
Gelling/Binding: higher than Soy and similar to egg albumen
Foaming: similar to egg albumen. However, other research reported significantly lower values
Emulsion: similar to egg albumen. Note this result was consistent with prior research
Nutty/earthy flavor


Nutrition:

PDCAAS: .80 or better
Limiting AA: Methionine
High protein, magnesium, phosphorus, and zinc
Allergenicity: High (similar to shellfish), but research and data is limited


Applications: 

Bakery, pasta, protein bars, shakes