Potency of consuming insects in Papua
From 19 to 21 February 2008 an international Workshop was held in Chiang Mai (Thailand) on edible insects, organized by FAO.
At the meeting – with participants from eight S.E. Asian countries and four other countries – we want to share the possibilities of insects becoming a source of protein for local people in Papua. Papuans of about 260 tribes are familiar with the consumption of 80-100 species of insects, although the areas are quite restricted.
In countries as Thailand and China consumption of insects is much wider distributed than in Papua: on markets dried and tinned insects of various kinds are for sale, mostly breed by local people.
Some tribes in Papua have a good knowledge of insects, as the very detailed knowledge on Cosmopsaltria (Hemiptera, Auchenorrhyncha) at the Mee people in the Kobowre Mountains.
In all lowlands we find consumption of the sago grub. Besides that Blattidea, Phasmida, Orthoptera, Mantodea, Hymenoptera, Hemiptera, Coleoptera, Ephemenoptera and Lepidoptera (over 50 moths and/or caterpillars) belong to the diet of one or more tribes.