Students for a Smarter Planet ..leaders with conscience

While cricket consumption isn’t new in the world, the western world has not embraced this way of eating.

In the year 2050 it is estimated that the Earth will be populated by 9 billion people. A sustainable alternative to meat production that will produce enough for everyone, without posing additional stress on the environment is being sought. One such protein source is insects.

Insects have marginal environmental impact. They produce virtually no methane, reproduce extremely quickly, and require minimal feed, water and space. It is estimated that crickets are 20x more efficient to raise for protein than cattle.

eXo, a new start-up in Brooklyn, NY is banking on the success of their protein bars which are made with cricket flour. Their mission is to “normalize insect consumption”. Two Brown University graduates think they have created the perfect food item that American’s will find palatable.

Stockholm is really ramping up their cricket production with plans to create InsectCity and BuzzBuilding.

blog cricket house

Belatchew Labs has developed plans to make Stockholm a sustainable, cricket-consuming city with InsectCity and Buzz Building, an integrated network for cricket cultivation and consumption.

Do you embrace this food source? Will you make it a part of your daily diet?


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For those of us not spectacularly chemically inclined:  What IS lignin?

Lignin is an organic substance binding the cells, fibres and vessels which constitute wood and the lignified elements of plants, as in straw. After cellulose, it is the most abundant renewable carbon source on Earth. Between 40 and 50 million tons per annum are produced worldwide as a mostly non commercialized waste product.  [Source: The International Lignin Institute (ILI)]
Two really interesting articles on this substance:

Lignin-derived chemicals to hit market in 2021

Lignocellulose has huge potential for the production of bioplastics


If this field interests you, study, conduct research or find a job!  Wageningen UR has branches all over The Netherlands and abroad.  Lux Research serves clients on six continents from offices in Boston, New York, Amsterdam, Tokyo, Singapore and Shanghai.

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Can aquaculture make fish tastier and more environmentally friendly?

Fish farming is experiencing sharp growth. The global demand for fish is increasing, while ocean resources are at their limits. So what is needed is a sustainable way to produce more fish.

At the Wageningen University in the Netherlands, researchers are doing an in-depth study of fish metabolism.

Fish nutritionists and geneticists have managed to replace most of the meal and oil in fish diets with plant nutrients. Some fish in this project from the trout family are being fed on a strict vegetarian diet.

The research shows us not only how to feed the fish, but also how to feed the fish in a way that is environmentally friendly.

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So….  where did last night’s fish dinner come from?

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August 1st, 2014

While you might raise an eyebrow (at the very least) at the thought of eating in an actual dumpster, this story has a very positive message.  I can be as skeptical as the next person about trendy NY happenings, but I leave you to make your own judgements.  I donate to my local food banks – both monetarily and by bringing in fresh home-baked goods.

If the concept of dumpster-dining catches on, could it help alleviate the need for dumpster-diving by those who have no other recourse for dinner by prompting more social consciousness about their plight?  Maybe this story will inspire you to create a food storage system that reduces spoilage – or to hold a fundraiser for your local food bank and team it with a job training program offering that helps those who’ve lost jobs obtain marketable new skills – or devise a social media campaign that invites participation in creating bacteria resistant foods that don’t involve GMOs? Could you be the ‘chef of the future’?

One Man’s Trash Is Another Man’s 6-Course Dinner


According to the Natural Resources Defense Council, American families throw out about 25 percent of their groceries each year, often because they don’t maximize the food’s full use — for example, some people throw away broccoli stems and only use the florets — or they don’t know how to store perishable items correctly. What’s more, according to the World Resources Institute, about one-third of all food produced worldwide gets lost or wasted in food production and consumption systems annually.

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July 31st, 2014

How do you educate others?  Do you take up the cry for what is right?  Contribute to the betterment of your society?  You may be inspired by a passionate and dedicated voice for Africa.

The environmentalist, Nnimmo Bassey, deplores the Green Revolution in Africa and oil spills in the Niger Delta region. He does not underestimate the work to be done to educate people on the need to stop those who wish to destroy the environment and to redefine new concepts of development Read an interview with Nnimmo Bassey, director of Health of Mother Earth Foundation in Nigeria, which is an ecological think tank.

Visit the Health of Mother Earth Foundation (HOMEF) website and learn the stories of those who want to make a difference.  Explore the activities undertaken by these individuals driven by their love of humanity. (Be patient; it may take a few mins for the site to load…)  While you’re there, view some of the recorded videos of Bassey – powerful stuff!

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