Eating insects

They're full of vitamins and minerals, but the thought of eating them makes most people feel sick. Watch this video about one man's mission to promote bugs as a food source!


Do the preparation task first. Then watch the video and do the exercises. Remember you can read the transcript at any time.


Presenter: Every resort town in the US has a candy store, but one store in Pismo Beach, California, goes beyond the usual taffy and caramel apples. If Hotlix has its way, Americans will be snacking on everything from caterpillars and cockroaches to mealworm-covered apples.

Larry Peterman is a candyman on a mission. For more than a decade he’s been promoting a valuable food source that most Americans find revolting. In a land of plenty, people resist. Larry knows why. From an early age, parents teach children to avoid insects.

Larry Peterman: In our culture, from the time that we’re really small, we’re taught to avoid insects. They might bite you like a mosquito, or just swat them.

This has got a good cricket in it!

Presenter: But kids aren’t the only ones munching on bugs. Around the world, more than 1,400 insect species show up on menus. Insect eating, or entomophagy, is part of healthy diets in Asia, Africa, Australia and Latin America. This trend is anything but new. Archaeologists have found evidence of it dating to the earliest humans.

Advocates of insect-eating like to note that it’s environmentally sound. Producing a pound of caterpillar takes a tenth of the resources needed to produce a pound of beef. And insects brim with vitamins and minerals. But despite all the benefits, most Americans can’t stomach bugs.

Waiter: Welcome, welcome, welcome! Have a seat!

Presenter: Unlike Larry Peterman, who celebrates them at his dinner parties. The evening begins with Larry’s version of the classic shrimp cocktail.

Larry Peterman: We’ve just finished preparing a cricket cocktail. It’s a lot like a shrimp cocktail, only instead of shrimp we use crickets.

OK, folks, here’s the first course! Now, enjoy!

While you’re enjoying this, I’m going down and I’ll get your next course.

Presenter: The main course is a stir-fry, with a special garnish.

Larry Peterman: Here we go! Dinner is served!

Dinner guests: Get ready … OK … uno, dos … three … go!

Presenter: Several courses later, Larry presents his pièce de résistance.

Larry Peterman: OK! Here it is, folks! What you’ve been waiting for!

Dinner guest: Oh no!

Larry Peterman: Now, don’t let anybody dive in until everyone’s been served, please!

We call it a Pismo Surfer. What it is is a banana with whipped cream, and a really good cockroach on it. You don’t have to eat the wings, you don’t have to eat the head, unless you want to.

Dinner guest: Do you know where this cockroach has been?

Dinner guest: How does it taste?

Larry Peterman: We can do another one next week if you like!

Presenter: Larry predicts he’ll eventually win people over.

Larry Peterman: As we become more and more insect food-oriented, our tastes are going to change, and so I see a niche for somebody that does gourmet insects. Could have some snob appeal, like people taste flies and, ‘Mmm, this is good. Hey, this bug is good!’

© National Geographic


What do you think about eating insects? Would you be brave enough to go to one of Larry's dinner parties?

Average: 2.3 (3 votes)
Personal online tutoring
EnglishScore Tutors is the British Council’s one-to-one tutoring platform for 13- to 17-year-olds.


Profile picture for user JohnC103

Submitted by JohnC103 on Thu, 07/29/2021 - 02:45

I'm from Asia and knew that insects are nutritious food but it taste so bad, I won't try it anymore.

Submitted by BOB35 on Wed, 05/13/2020 - 14:36

I already tasted an insect during a birthday. The insect was salty and barbecue tasting. Not want to start again !!! Bob - France

Submitted by karenborda2003 on Wed, 02/21/2018 - 21:56

I think eating insects is very unpleasant but for other cultures and people it can be very delicious, this video is interesting because it shows us what kind of insects are usually eaten in parts of the world

Submitted by Juan_Rosas on Wed, 02/21/2018 - 01:48

I think that is incredible that the people eat insects as common food, I think that i'm not brave for eat insects in Larry's dinner parties because i think that i don't like the flavor of insects

Submitted by avrilgalindo03 on Tue, 02/20/2018 - 17:55

This docomental is very interesting because informs us about something strange

Submitted by danielcastro05182003 on Tue, 02/20/2018 - 17:55

which is bad and I would not eat any

Submitted by Juanfernandez9a on Tue, 02/20/2018 - 17:54

This is a interesting movie , this talk about a interesting topic I really like it

Submitted by DeivedVillalba on Tue, 02/20/2018 - 17:51

I think that is true that the insects have a lot of vitamins and, if you eat it, you will got all the strong vitamins of the insect. I won't go to one of the Larry's dinner, because I don't like the insects. Thanks.

Submitted by DanielMfc2018 on Tue, 02/20/2018 - 17:50

the video is very amazing and a little ugly because I get a bit of disgust insects but was very interesting and i like this topic about for the eating insect , and i like the information to bring in the video for the eat insect

Submitted by mateo_jurado_caceres on Tue, 02/20/2018 - 17:47

I think that all people are free to eat the food taht they want but in my personal way i dont wanna to eat a insect becouse for me is so ugly and revolting

Submitted by CristianMotta on Tue, 02/20/2018 - 17:46

I think the video is good because it gives us a lot to learn from those cultures

Submitted by mariabritel on Tue, 02/20/2018 - 17:39

i think is terrible and unpleasant because for me is not delicious, in my life i never had the opportunity to prove that. yes, because we need have a new experience and try new food.

Submitted by svdm2509 on Tue, 02/20/2018 - 17:36

I think it's unpleasant and I would never eat no, becauses i hate this and is unpleasant

Submitted by julianMontealegre on Tue, 02/20/2018 - 17:33

I think I would be able to eat in the larry restaurant the dessert of the banana with cream and the insect since it would be a small insect and the taste would be contrasted with the whipped cream.

Submitted by Santiagoortegon13 on Tue, 02/20/2018 - 17:33

I think eating insects is disgusting since some have unpleasant things when eating or have a very different flavor, I would not be able to go to a larry dinner since it would be disgusting

Submitted by TigreCastro0429 on Tue, 02/20/2018 - 17:32

I think that it depends on the culture of the people, for example in some cultures it is a normal thing and that all the population thinks that is a very goog breakfas or dinner, but in the society that we live it is a very ugly thing

Submitted by aparipe19 on Tue, 02/20/2018 - 17:32

I don't want to eat this kind of food, but is so interesting, who make this kind of food.

Submitted by steven14s on Tue, 02/20/2018 - 17:32

It was a good video,explains everything in a very specific way and gives concrete examples

Submitted by juancamiloorjuela on Tue, 02/20/2018 - 17:31

i think is so yummy, i can't say if try to eat insects some insects can disguisting

Submitted by julianchavarro on Tue, 02/20/2018 - 17:23

It is a well done video and it explains things well
English courses near you