A Word Cloud About Insects as Food (Entomaphagy)

For a little while, I was collecting articles about Insects as Food. I thought it would be fun to feed them into a word cloud generator, so I piled the articles into a giant text file, made some small adjustments and pasted the text into one of the free on-line cloud generators.   I used WordItOut because it was user friendly and allowed a good amount of creative control.The word cloud shown below was built using text from 33 articles (over 27,000 words) from a variety of mass-media sources like magazine articles, newspaper articles, blog posts at media websites, and trade publications.  They aren’t a random sample of news coverage and are probably somewhat cricket heavy. Before submitting the text, I edited the source material to remove plurals from certain top-ranked words (e.g., crickets -> cricket, insects -> insect, etc.).

Cricket is the dominant word since they are the “it insect” of the moment in the U.S. and Canada — they are fairly easy to raise and easy to incorporate into processed foods. The next tier of words includes protein (the most prominent nutritional feature of insects), farm (when a new farm opens, it gets press, especially in farming areas like Iowa or California Central Valley), and flour (converting dried insects into flour is a popular way to bring them to our plates). Interestingly, the word sustainable is in one of the lower tiers, even though it is a major emphasis of insect promoters. Climate and greenhouse (as in climate change and greenhouse gases) don’t make an appearance at all on this word cloud.

Word cloud made with WordItOut


  • “Linger Puts Crickets on the Menu” in 5280: The Denver Magazine (2/10/16)
  • “Made in the Valley: Bassetts Cricket Ranch” in ABC 30 (2/22/16)
  • “Cricket pie, mealworm protein balls on the menu at Toronto market” in CBC (1/22/16)
  • “New purveyor Jiminy Co. hopes to convince Charlestonians that crickets are delicious” in Charleston City Paper (3/30/16)
  • “Cricket farmer hopes business will start hopping” in CTV News (2/22/16)
  • “Edible Insect Processor Bugsolutely Launches Cricket Pasta ” in Daily Meal (1/21/16)
  • “Meet Iowa’s first edible-cricket farmer” in Des Moines Register (7/20/16)
  • “Bugs are recipe for success for French pasta maker” in Dunya News (2/23/16)
  • “What Will It Take for Americans to Eat Insects?” in Eater (12/17/15)
  • “This Desktop Edible Insect Hive Grows Your Daily Protein At Home” in Fast Co.Exist (11/10/15)
  • “Not Ready To Eat Crickets? Try Feeding Them To Your Dog” in Fast Co.Exist (11/25/15)
  • “As Edible Insects Become More Popular, Thailand’s Insect Farming Community Is Growing” in Fast Co.Exist (9/26/14)
  • “Eating Bugs and the Future of Nutrition” in Food and Nutrition (8/8/16)
  • “Ealing company launches pioneering protein product ‘cricket flour'” in Get West London (02/02/2016)
  • “Let’s admit it: Crickets are just another food fad” in Grist (07/01/2016)
  • “In the Apocalyptic Future, We’ll All Be Eating Bugs” in Grub Street (New York Magazine) (07/27/16)
  • “Eating bugs may be a giant leap for mankind” in Heraldscot Land Paper (02/21/16)
  • “Korea seeks to foster insect industry” in Korea Herald (04/04/16)
  • “Edible cricket farm coming soon to Van Nuys ” in LA Times Daily Dish (05/04/16)
  • “Eating bugs: ‘Chirps’ cricket chips and cookies ” in LA Times Daily Dish (04/28/14)
  • “Whole Foods Markets to supply edible insects” in Meat Info (11/25/15)
  • “Silicon Valley’s power brain food: crickets” in Mercury News (08/13/16)
  • “Grub: Eating bugs to save the planet.” in New Yorker (08/15/11)
  • “Bugs: Fear Factor Fodder or Food of the Future?” in Now Toronto (02/17/16)
  • “Portlanders turn up their noses at edible crickets” in Portland Business Journal (12/28/15)
  • “I don’t like eating crickets. Oh no. I love it.” in Stuff NZ (11/01/15)
  • “A different crunch: Benton County couple launches state’s first cricket farm” in The Gazette (07/25/16)
  • “Let them eat bugs: US startup sees future of sustainable food in creepy crawlies” in The Guardian (08/06/16)
  • “KMS teacher engages students with new flavors” in The News Tribune (02/26/16)
  • “Edible bugs on the menu at Toronto market ” in Toronto Sun (01/20/16)
  • “Welcome to the bug farm: Edible cricket rearing goes industrial in California” in Tree Hugger (02/26/15)
  • “From ‘Ick’ to Making Business History: Iowa Cricket Farmer” in Vinton Iowa Paper (07/06/16)

Image Credit
Word cloud generated by WordItOut, subject to a Creative Commons License (BY-NC-ND)

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