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Season 2: Next Gen Proteins


Where handpicked startups present sector-specific innovations to a jury of industry fellows

In Season 2, recognized world-class Researchers, Scientists, Faculty Members, Senior Executives, Experts, Chefs, Investors and Entrepreneurs from around the globe, engage in strategic exchange of views and share startling intel on viable transformative innovation in Agriculture, Food and Beverage, zooming in the next gen proteins space.
Topfloor is where inspiring and passionate game changers, visionary entrepreneurs share startlingly impressive intel on food of the future with a panel of experts.

Topfloor: S2:E09 | Episode title: Nutritious and clean food

On this week's episode of Topfloor, hosted and moderated by Tommaso di Bartolo, entrepreneurs Hector Jimenez, CEO and Co-founder of Nutrinsectos, superior protein packed with nutrients, vitamins and minor minerals, and Sarah Schlafly, co-founder and CEO of Mighty Cricket, a company that is highly committed to building a cleaner protein industry to sustain the world, will be joining the conversation with the industry fellows Marie Bruiser, PhD and Thought For Food Community Manager and Josh Galt, Market development of insects as food, feed, upcycling and cosmetics to discuss the future of insects protein market.


Podcast transcription

Below is a transcript of the episode, edited to offer you a reading alternative with increasing convenience, of our guest speakers' conversation with Tommaso, this episode’s moderator. For more information on the people and ideas discussed in the episode, see the links at the bottom of this post. Additionally, for more on sustainable transformative innovation in FoodTech, please register for the upcoming live streaming episodes of Season 2 on Corpor8.

Key points:

  • Crickets: a great horizon of opportunities in a growing market worldwide
  • Standing out in the shelves as “clean protein” is the way to go
  • Innovation and automation are key to promote next gen proteins growth

Tommaso: Hello everybody, thank you everyone for joining today our Season 2, Episode 9 of Topfloor.

So, actually, this week, I saw a very interesting video of yours, Sarah. How you started your startup, it was very impressive. But I don't want to start sharing anything here that wasn't posted on LinkedIn...

Sarah: I founded Mighty Cricket two years ago and I just had my two year anniversary in August. So I posted a video on LinkedIn about that. The video was just me, pulling my little wagon of Mighty Cricket goods to the farmers market. I was on crutches. I tied my backpack to the wagon handle so I could take it to the farmers market.

We enjoy ourselves with these minimum viable products. They were just “some simple flavored oatmeals put in a very simple packaging to test the market”, because we had this hunch that crickets will grow big in the next gen proteins space. I wanted to bring this protein source to the US market so that we can grow the industry and provide a highly equitable source of clean protein. Once the industry takes hold and scales, then we can really drive down the cost of this incredible protein source. So, that was my passion to kick things off.

After testing the market for a couple years, I conducted lots of surveys. The survey suggests that one in two Americans are now ready to consume crickets in powdered form, which is really exciting. At Mighty Cricket we are getting Americans over the stigma of eating edible insects by milling them into a very fine powder, and then blending them undetected into delicious meals and snacks. US consumers then forget about the whole concept of eating a “scary insect”. Instead, they're just focusing on enjoying a delicious bowl of dark chocolate oatmeal that is healthy for them, but it's like eating dessert for breakfast.

Tommaso: Tell me more about your intriguing mission, please...

Sarah: So, our mission is to build this clean protein source to sustain the world as the global population is exponentially growing through the next 30 years. There's already a developing market for alternative proteins. 

“In 2017 and 2018, the edible insect market here in the US grew by 300%. But also there was a 30% growth in meat analogs sales. And then, 52% of Americans said that they were increasing their number of next gen proteins, with plant based proteins, primarily. There's also a rise in sustainable food brands and that trend can be driven by Generation Y and Generation Z entering the market and demanding brands become more sustainable.”

So, insects are a highly sustainable source of protein. Crickets require, on average, only one gallon of water for every pound of protein. They also can be grown indoors in the middle of a city, so you don't need the type of land usage that you have from soybeans or other plant based crops. Or even livestock requires significant amounts of land. Which means that, because crickets can be grown in an urban setting, we have the potential now to have a hyper local source of protein that we've never had before.

Also, insects don't require pesticides and fertilizers, which are often oil based. So I believe a cow consumes in its lifetime, over 1000 pounds of oil, just through the amount of feed that's going through it. So within two tablespoons of our powder, consumers get 10 grams of clean protein. They get 100% of their daily value vitamin D 12, which is a vitamin that has been historically in the US people are very deficient in that vitamin. That's hard to find in plant based proteins. That's why crickets and insects in general are really great next gen proteins sources.

“There's definitely a place to be increasing plant-based proteins and I really like the movement that paved the way for them taking it a step further and going to insects because I view insects as the happy middle ground between, as a bridge between plant based proteins and then our conventional meat proteins.

The meat lovers will get the umami taste and the neediness flavor of insects and I have some even vegans who consume insects now, and they like it for the health benefits and for the environmental benefits. So we have up to about 12 different skews of oatmeal and protein powders and then just our pure cricket flour. 

Our goal is to saturate our region, grow our e-commerce channels and scale nationally through. We were pursuing the restaurant route really hard last year, and then because of COVID, all the restaurants shut down and they are in a really fragile state right now. So we've pivoted totally to e-commerce right now. But last fall, we ran the cricket challenge here in St. Louis and we got 50 restaurants to feature crickets on their menu all at once. It was a really great awareness campaign for why we should be embracing edible insects. So, once the restaurants get back into good shape again, I will be pursuing that route.

I'm also looking at exporting, now we have GNC Mexico that's evaluating our products, and I'm talking to a distributor in Taiwan and Vietnam. Our goal is to really scale up this industry but go at a steady pace, not try and grow like really hard, really fast. I'm in it for the long haul. And I see this as a longer term play. It's a really niche industry right now. So I'm paving the way for that. It may be five years when the industry starts to take off, I'll have all of my supply chain in place to really, really hit it hard.

Crickets as a cleaner protein that is still animal protein

Marie: I'm wondering how do you sell yourself? What is the value proposition that you use to reach your target market? And how do you get people to return to your products?

Sarah: one of our value propositions is that our products have the nutrients that you can only find in meat protein. So the vitamin B12, and even some other certain vitamins and minerals are in a more bioavailable form because crickets are any animal versus plant. In fact, people who are in the health and wellness industry really understand that and embrace.The second value proposition is definitely the sustainability angle. Furthermore, the third one would be our greater mission to provide clean protein for all. 

We tell our customers that "you are the early adopters, you're paying a premium price for this product, because it's very niche and we don't have industry efficiencies, but because of that, you are leading this movement, we're getting people around the world to embrace this". 

Once we do this mainstream, it's going to really drag down that cost and our future generations are going to have access to clean protein in a way that we don't have access to now, because free range chickens, grass fed beef and organic is so expensive. Our customers really buy into that, they appreciate our mission and I think that's what keeps them coming back. But also it just tastes amazing. I have a culinary background as a chef. I taught nutrition cooking classes, so I really focused on providing the best flavor experiences for my customers.

Josh: Are you looking at potentially working with those producers in those other countries and then using your brand to create the product for those markets? What is the plan there? And then just in terms of how you're producing locally in the US. Can you explain a little bit more about the sustainability of that and how you track that data?

Sarah: There aren't a whole lot of cricket farms in the US right now. They're starting to pop up. I've had to source from overseas farms. And the epicenter of the industry historically has really been Vietnam and Thailand. Thailand has the longest history of crickets. Mexico too. Mexico has a really long history of crickets. So there are several farms there.

What I see going forward is, when I talk to people, distributors and other countries, it seems like the American brands have a high level of trust. I see myself as working with local farmers and local manufacturers to produce these products and then put the American Mighty Cricket brand name on it to bring that level of trust to something that for many cultures is an uncomfortable cuisine, because it's unfamiliar. Even though 2 billion people around the world consume insects, across 80% of the world's countries, I've learned that these 2 billion people aren't really in city centers. They're concentrated into rural areas or maybe just smaller towns. There's a lot of edible insects being consumed in Africa and then China as well. 

Tommaso: How are you managing to innovate in your work?

I think that if I can establish these regional manufacturing points, then the shipping definitely goes down and then the carbon emissions from the shipping goes down too. So it's really an exercise of supply chain and logistics. And starting out, I have to keep things very simple. In that sense, I import the crickets. On one hand, it definitely generates carbon emissions, however, we do it via cargo. So, I keep that down a little bit. And then as we scale and grow, we'll be more innovative in our efficiencies.

Josh: I'm based in Southeast Asia. So that's something that I've been a big proponent of for the last few years is utilize the thousands of local smallholder farmers. It's much better, both socially and in terms of environmental impact. So if you can do that, that's awesome. And yet, we agree that using your brand will definitely inspire trust. 

You mentioned you had some vegans that were eating or consuming your products. How do you convince people that are vegan or vegetarian to try insects? And like what is your message specifically to those people that works?

Sarah: I'm not necessarily trying to convince vegans to eat insects, I think that they're doing a great job by going vegan. But just through my messaging to my general messaging, I do get vegans who are like: "actually, that makes a lot of sense and I am vitamin D deficient, I have to supplement and I would much rather just eat food then take supplements". I think that messaging really inspires vegans. Also, the humane way in which crickets are grown and harvested and that mimics their natural life cycle, for a lot of vegans, that makes them feel comfortable. 

“If we grow this industry, it can spark this worldwide movement that will bring clean protein to all. It is something that a lot of vegans want to be a part of. They don't want to miss out on providing that social impact.”

Marie: Those vegans tend to be younger? We're seeing that a lot, the reason that we've focused on them is because they come with this sense of sustainability and wanting to do good and like having an impact. I wonder if those come hand in hand for you as well.

Sarah: Definitely, our Gen Y and Gen Z's are racing in this the most, but a lot of the vegans who turned into our new mothers who, in their pregnancy, need certain nutrients that they can't get from plants. It's just not satisfying them in the growth of the babies.

Standing out in the protein shelves

Tommaso: By using cricket as a source of alternative protein, as a startup, how can you be different and unique in the moment that you are on a shelf and somebody has to make a choice? What's your strategy behind differentiators and online versus retail? How can you stand out?

Sarah: Well, it's interesting, our brand is called Mighty Cricket. Even though we're very upfront with it's an edible insect product, people view that it's just as brand name. We kind of want to have it up front but downplay that so our products don't scream cricket on the front. Our brand names' top in this lower font, but what we do scream on the front with protein powders and huge block letters is clean protein. And by using the term clean it makes the consumer think "well is the protein that I'm currently eating, not clean? What is clean protein? What does that mean?" And they pick it out and they turn and read about it on the back of our packaging. 

Tommaso: Would you say that this is from a marketing perspective already a big differentiator compared to others? What would you say around other other competitors on the market? 

Sarah: I went to a local supermarket and I took a picture of the protein aisle. And then I just started looking at all the labels and there were big black letters that were like plant-based proteins, big labels that said whey protein, one said egg in big letters, but no one was using the term clean protein. And so that one was wide open for the taking. So, that's what I use. It is a huge differentiator because it's not explaining what the protein source is. It doesn't say it on the front. It just says the attributes of the printing service.

Josh: I noticed that when I was looking at your products recently to the clean aspect, and it has so many different ways that you can answer if people ask. Because the protein is clean, but also the way that the inputs are being fed to the insects is doing a process of cleaning and upcycling the protein as well. So it's really clever. Wait, wait a snag... That's awesome.

Marie: Where on the supermarket shelf do you see yourself? Like are you with the protein, are you with the cereals, are you somewhere completely different? 

Sarah: I read about Beyond Meats' journey, and they started in the vegetarian aisle. But as soon as they landed in the meat case, that's when their sales really took off. So I don't want Mighty Cricket to be cold out into the specialty aisle. I wanted to be in the mainstream shelves. So I envision our protein powders being with all the other protein powders, and I envision our oatmeals being with Quaker Oats. 

Tommaso: Would you say you are a classical startup? Meaning, do you go the funding route? And if so, what stage are you guys in? From a startup perspective, what could you share with us?

The best validation is the customer

Sarah: I'm open to fundraising, for sure. If someone really, really inspired my product and said, here's a half a million dollars, I would take that. But I haven't pursued it hard. Because I have two ways I can spend my time. I could spend my time understanding my customer and selling the product or I can spend my time selling the vision and getting money. So I thought, you know, really sales is the best proof of concept. So I'm spending my time selling. And if funding comes my way, that's great. But in the way that I've bootstrap this operation, I've kept it really lean. And I have a very long runway so I can continue to reinvest in my business without having to take out from the business. I find ways to get things done with rubbing sticks together. Guerilla marketing, I guess, is the appropriate term for it. So that's the route I decided to take, especially since most VCs say that the industry itself is too early here in the US. So right now, if I was going to raise money would be in the angel round. And I wouldn't want to accept anything under $200,000 because that wouldn't move the needle for me to get to the next point.

Tommaso: Then it depends on how fast and how big division is, right? If you want to infuse external money. How big is your team?

Sarah: I have a team of between five and 10 interns that come through and I partner with local universities. So I get students from these universities who are really passionate about the mission, and they come in and lend their time and talents. Usually on average, they stick with me for about a year. I'm the leader that is very trusting in my teams, so I just like to dump a project on them and give them some resources and say run with it and do what you want with it. I think that the students really like that because they've never received that level of autonomy within a company before. They love it, they come up with all sorts of projects that engage the community, really drive our online presence. The most reasons why I'm so trusting of them is because they understand their generation. That's a generation that's going to be driving this industry forward. So if I get Gen Z to talk to Gen Z, that's really great for Mighty Cricket and for the whole industry.



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Tommaso: I would like to now invite Hector Jimenez. It's a pleasure to have you Hector, please take it from here.

Hector: At Nutrinsectors, while I'm the founder and CEO, we see ourselves as researchers, and process developers focused on industrial insect farming and processing. So more than just being a cricket farm, we like to look into everything that has to do with insects. As you probably know, Mexico and China are the two countries with the most edible insect species. So our objective is to find ways to farm them and make them available to the public. Also, once we have these insects available, find ways to process them just as crickets are being grounded into butter, find different ways to get the most out of these insects. 

Tommaso: How did you start in the industry?

As most farms, we began with the most simple process, at the end of 2013. We believe we are one of the early players in the industry, at least here in Mexico. Of course, as Sarah mentioned, in Southeast Asia, this has been done like forever, but this is a small note. Most people think that because in Mexico, there's some sort of a culture of eating specially chapulines, which is a different species as cricket. Chapulines are being captured in the wild, and it is very popular in restaurants and street markets. But the thing with this species of chapulines is that because they're being captured in the wild, they do this practice during the rainy season. Of course, it's very popular, everyone goes out there to get the chapulines and it is hurting the environment. It is harming the species itself because they're capturing young adults and there are some people trying to protect all these edible insect industries that are not being farmed and produced for this purpose. 

So when promoting insects as a sustainable source of protein, we have to take into consideration that these insects have to be farm and the practice itself is not harming the environment or the species itself. Also, because these insects are being captured, we don't really have certainty of what the insect has been eating, if it's been consuming pesticides or other kinds of chemicals that we wouldn't want. Our main objective is to farm them and give traceability to all these ingredients that we are trying to promote. So, right now, we believe we are one of the major farms in Latin America. We are currently racing crickets in an industrial weight. So you know, even though they look something like cricket, it doesn't have wings. So it could be anything, right? As I said, our objective is to have as many different species as possible. 

We are right now focusing on crickets because we know there's a market but we also have these little creatures, looking for nutrition and sustainability. We also have in our project to start with the mealworm, we have an experimental colony, and also black soldiers fly. We know that there's a huge market for these two species. Right now it is aimed for different industrie, such as agriculture and other animals or feed but we hope to start these projects by 2021.

Tommaso: How are you improving in the industry? 

Right now, as I said with crickets, we believe that in order to have these ingredients available and make them affordable to most people, we need to apply automation. We need to do this as effectively and as efficiently as possible. Because as we all know, the ingredient itself it's amazing, but the process of forming them it's very manual and it's kind of old fashioned. 

“We are investing a lot of money, resources and innovation in terms of automating the process to bring the prices down very significantly. Not only our ingredient is more affordable, but also more companies will be taking the chance to use these ingredients in elaborating finished products.”

We need to be reliable and have products available all the time. But also on the side of the processing, there's a lot of room for improvement, not only the drying and milling, the two things that we're focusing on. We believe that having the crickets is just the start. We can improve the taste. The looks for the powder, the smell and even the particle size, so it can be implemented in a much larger number of products. So that's the second goal that we are working on the processing so we can have a very high quality powder.

Lastly, the development of new products: We believe food is only the tip of the iceberg when talking about insects. We know there's a whole world out there of very high value ingredients that can be extracted from insects. So we are super excited to be part of this industry right now. It's amazing to have these kinds of conversations. 

“We want to talk and learn about our customers, which are the companies that utilize our ingredients to create new products. It gives a lot of good feedback to learn about some of the experiences.”

I want to conclude with some of the commerce topics... One of them is going into different countries or different markets and is not only trying to sell the product there. We are working right now with two customers in the US who purchased our powder because they want to bring the product into Mexico and there are a couple of big big chains trying to bring the product down. 

Our main discussion is that it doesn't make a lot of sense to ship the powder over to the US and transform it and then send it back to Mexico. That adds on the cost, but also considering that Mexico, and pretty much all Latin in South America or Asia and other third world countries, the purchasing power of regular customers is way below those in the US, Europe and Canada, maybe Australia and some other countries. 

What we are working on with these companies is taking advantage of the fact that the main ingredient, the powder, is here in Mexico. The manufacturing can be done here in Mexico utilizing the recipes and the trust that the US brands has to add to the final product. And also, we will save a lot in terms of pricing so that will make it available for customers here in Mexico. 

Crickets versus chapulines

Josh: Why did you choose to go with crickets versus the chapulines, which are much more common, culturally and also like comida hispanica? It's like a historical thing that they're everywhere. Have you looked at farming chapulines or was it just too much of a pain so you went with crickets? What was the rationale for sticking with crickets? 

Hector: Well, there are two main reasons. The first one, I started in this business because I knew there was a demand and the only providers or very most of the providers were in Asia. I had a couple of people that I knew in the US trying to bring the product from Asia and I was like, "I'm just across the border." I mean, we have the perfect weather. We have some sort of knowledge, I'm gonna get into this. There is a famous doctor here in Mexico, Julio Ramos-Elorduy, she's like the eminence in terms of an entomophagy and that was like 20 years ago. They did a lot of experiments and trials to try to raise chapulines indoors and to raise them but it hasn't been done very effectively.

So the two reasons are like, chapulines, no one has been able to do that effectively. The people trying to do this didn't really have many resources or knowledge. Because honestly, the people in this industry in the chapulines are just just regular guys going outside trying to catch as many as possible until they do the local markets. 

The second reason is like, we wouldn't want to stick to an ingredient that is known in Mexico and maybe some in some other parts of the world, but more as a cultural or as a very small niche market. I mean, it chapulines are seen as a local traditional ingredient. Crickets, on the other hand, we know everywhere in the world. People know about crickets. My customers, right now, just want crickets.

Josh: Are you having to educate the domestic market? Are you not attempting to sell into the domestic market with grades? 

Hector: Everytime. The people around me, even though they know I raise crickets, they always mentioned chapulines. I have to educate people. As Sarah was mentioning, we know there's a high market for crickets. Everyone believes they are chapulines when they see them. And once I explained what's the difference between these two species, they just go ahead and change the menu and start purchasing crickets.

Also, chapulines are very hard to get in some months of the year. So half of the year, they don't have the dish available. So, when they change to cricket, we have been frying them, seasoning them with lemon pepper, with chili, I mean, you name it. We've done everything. And restaurants are just going crazy about the idea of having an ingredient that is super versatile. 

Sarah: What's interesting about that is I was approached by a chapulines farm, I think in Europe. They said that they're more prone to swarm, which in some ways makes it easier to raise. Have you come across that at all?

Hector: Yeah, I know a couple of companies that are racing. I don't think that's chapulines, it was grasshoppers. Chapulines you will only find them in Mexico as far as I know. There are like 1000 different species of crickets. Grasshoppers, there are a couple of companies, I think in Israel and Europe, racing grasshoppers. I think that's awesome but with chapulines people down here in Mexico are having a super hard time trying to raise them indoors.

Marie: There is a company called Blend Hub that is doing powders and flowers globally and they have little hubs everywhere. Basically companies like a lot of drink companies, the big ones, as well as crisps or chips, they can use these hubs all over the world, and they have the same quality assurance everywhere to make their products. Which is something that you would need now because it has the quality assurance as well as the local, other factors that get taken up as well. 

You mentioned you really want to do this indoors and controlled, so you can see that there are no pesticides, no other inputs, you know what your crickets are eating. And I wondered if that is something that you highlight in your packaging or in your products at all, or is that just something that is assumed because it's grown indoors?

Hector: When we started this project, we had a small presentation for the public. We had a one pound presentation. Right now, business is doing so well. 

“We believe in working and collaborating with companies utilizing companies who are experts in terms of marketing, educating the customers and having direct contact with them to do that part of the job.”

Right now, we don't have a package because we don't go out until the product is released to the public. But we do let our customers, who are purchasing the powder, know that we feed our crickets only organic cereal, nor fish or meal. Also we don't use any sorts of growing chemicals or anything else rather than the feed, which is food grade. Thankfully, that's something that our customers can smell and can taste because I know some other growers are using other kinds of foods or fitori and insects can get the taste of what you're feeding them.

Automation is the answer to speed up development

Marie: The next question is around automation, what have you got? Does that allow you to lower the price? Because you mentioned that would be the case, so that you can compete with other companies, they might be feeding other things to the insects. Can you compete with other companies who are doing what you're doing thanks to your automation?

Hector: We do have some of our automation going on. That's why we need to be very, very careful with what we're exposing because that's something we have developed and we are still in the process of patenting them. 

Our main objective is to lower the price of each gram of protein, as chicken, beef, fish. We know people believe insect powders might be expensive compared to other animal proteins but once you break it down and try to get the percentage of protein and the quality of protein of the ingredient, it makes a lot more sense. We hope that by 2021/2022 will be on those same levels. Automating feeding, drinking, harvesting on the processing will bring the price way down. I mean, if we compare how other industries have invested millions and millions of dollars over hundreds of years, we believe that we are going super fast to try to catch them.

Josh: I want to know more of why you chose to go the automation route when the cost of labor and Mexico would be very favorable in terms of bringing down the price and efficiency as well as the social impact. What was the motive when you looked at it and said "you know what, it's better to go automation as opposed to just using the favorable cost of labor here where we are"? 

Hector: Even though labor here in Mexico is fairly cheap or affordable, we know that if we want to produce the amount of powder that we want to produce, we need to automate in order to stay efficient. As cheap as it can get, you wouldn't want 1000 people just running around feeding them by hand. Because it is not only inefficient in terms of the logistics of it, but also we believe that keeping crickets as healthy and as happy as possible, we need to provide just the right amount of feed at the right amount of time. 

We believe automation doesn't necessarily have to be robots just providing feed. There are many different ways we have to be super creative and innovative to develop semi-automations or automated systems that work without people having to be there but not necessarily super high tech robots that will mean super high investment. So, we are trying to keep it super simple but also as efficient as possible.

Building meaningful connections

Tommaso: We're here not only to share knowledge but also to make your connections. Well, and, Marie, what are your thoughts? Are we going to have some clean protein with Sarah?

Marie: Yes. I think especially her passion and her dedication to the topic makes it stand out. I would love to take some over here. I think it's a fascinating industry and market and I think people are more open to trying new things and two ends are also more aware of what goes into their food. I think that's where Sarah options come in. What I love about it is that you have these breakfast options like your oatmeals, and instead of just always having a protein powder, because protein powder is something that I personally wouldn't eat, I feel like it is already a little bit removed from food. From Thoughts For Foods perspective, we support entrepreneurs and startups globally, especially led by young innovators, such as both of yourselves. So if you want to stay in touch, please do reach out to me and become part of our network.

Tommaso: So we have one yes with Sarah. Marie, how about Hector, curious to know more and stay in touch with Hector? Yes or no?

Marie: Absolutely. I think you're not just growing insects, you're clearly thinking about the next step with the automation as well. It sounds like something's very interesting coming there. And when you can talk about it, I'm sure it's going to be a very interesting topic that others will take up soon. And like you mentioned, you've been in the industry for a while already and it comes through like your knowledge of what you're doing is really fascinating. So reach out anytime if you want to.

Tommaso: Thank you. Awesome. We're going to make the two introductions from Marie to Sarah and Hector. That's beautiful. Josh, what are your thoughts, some clean protein with Sarah?

Josh: Absolutely. Actually, I've been a big fan of hers and of the companies for a while. I remember the challenge that you did last year, which was super cool with all the restaurants. If there's anything that I can do as well, connecting you with producers or getting into the Asian market. I think the product that you're making as Marie said, it's different, it's unique. It's not just a protein powder but you're mixing it into something that's almost an instant breakfast food. I think that that would do quite well. 

Tommaso: More than happy to make the introduction on Sarah and Josh. Josh, how about Hector Jimenez? Do you want to know more about that? 

Josh: Yeah, I love it. I've been spending time in Mexico the last few years, so seeing someone doing crickets and doing them on a much larger scale is exciting. I would absolutely love to talk more and if there's anything I can do. I think we have some mutual contacts already but I do know some startups there that are looking for larger quantities of crickets.

Tommaso: All right. I have two eyes on Hector's side. It's also legit to say Sarah and Hector, do you guys want to have an introduction to and continue the conversation?

Sarah: Yeah, we've actually connected before Hector said, I chat with him a little bit on LinkedIn. Oh, speaking of which, for those who are listening, I'm very active on LinkedIn. So if anyone wants to connect with me ask more questions or collaborate. I'm always accepting connection requests.

Tommaso: I would like to wrap up things and say thank you to all you guys, Josh, Hector, Sara Marie,I  really appreciate it. I learned a lot again. Thanks for allowing us to pick your brain sharing it with the world on such an important topic. Congratulations on each of your endeavors and we cannot end our broadcast without ending on a quote. I call it a quote that I have learned to craft over the last 20 years, which goes like this:

 “Never forget where you come from, it keeps you humble. But where you come from, cannot limit you where you want to go.”

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this Podcast as well as in its transcript are those of the participant guest speakers and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Corpor8 or its partners and sponsors. In the same way, the participant speakers do not endorse any products, services, brands, practices, professionals or views other than what they specifically and directly expressed by verbalizing at the time the episode was recorded. In addition, transcripts are generated using a combination of speech recognition software and human transcribers, and may contain errors. Please check the corresponding audio file (podcast) before ever quoting in print.





Josh Galt linkedin-color

Market development - insects as food, feed, upcycling, cosmetics


Sarah Schlafly linkedin-color

Co-Founder and CEO of Mighty Cricket


Hector Jimenez linkedin-color

Co-Founder and CEO of Nutrinsectos



Marie Brueser, PhD linkedin-color

Thought For Food Community Manager

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 Imagine the impact it might cause if ... your colleagues ought to be more receptive when discussing transformative business ideas?