The world’s population is growing at a rate of about 1.3% a year and expected to double from 6 billion to 12 billion people by 2054. With this in mind, discussions about how to manage the world’s food supply are taking center stage at the United Nations. At least one agency within the U.N. announced this solution: Eat more insects.

As the booming population begins to strain agriculture and livestock, the Food and Agricultural Organization, a U.N. food agency, is pushing the idea of integrating edible insects into world’s food supply.

The organization specifically cites crickets, grasshoppers and ants as underutilized food sources for people, pets and livestock. The insects are high in protein and minerals, produce significantly less greenhouse gas per kilo than pigs and require far less feed than cattle.

In many countries, insects are already used as a food source. In fact, for nearly 2 billion people worldwide, insects are already a regular part of their diets. Insect farms, that are now mainly used for niche markets like pet stores, would multiply and crank out volumes of insects that would funnel into a viable food source for human consumption.

An idea that was once reserved for survival reality TV shows (at least in the U.S.) is now being considered as a serious long-term solution for sustaining the world’s depleting food supply. While I am personally not ready to embrace this concept, the issue brings to light the serious discussions taking place to ensure that food supplies keep pace with population growth.

What do you think about it?