Status and Prospect of Edible Insects in Myanmar
Aye Aye Myint
Yezin Agricultural University, Department of Animal Science, Burma
People in different regions of Myanmar consume a large number of insect species. The consumption of insects by rural and urban residents will improve the food security. However insect consumption in urban areas is for snacks especially at night as they are a preferred food with beer and other beverages. Most edible insects traditionally have been wild harvested. Some species are available only seasonally while others are collected throughout the year. The time of insect harvesting from wild habitats depends on specific species behaviour and life cycles. While crickets (Acheta domesticus) are one of the most prefer insects in Myanmar, cricket farming is not well developed yet. Small-scale cricket farming requires relatively little investment. But the main constraints are lack of knowledge of farming techniques and inexperience in marketing. This study aims to help local farmers to adopt the simple method of the cricket farming practices to enhance food security, food safety and livelihood opportunity for women in selected areas of Myanmar. House cricket A. domesticus can be reared using a simple method with e.g. carrot, pumpkin and Chinese cabbage as feeds. Total life cycle duration is about 52 days at 27-30 °C. This method can reduce the cost of feeds and farmers will be able to get a quick financial return on investment. Silk worm Bombyx mori is one of the potential edible insect in some areas of Myanmar. Silk worms have been reared by the silk industry. Small-scale producers not only support the regional silk industry but also consume the silk worm pupae, an important by-product at the household level. Training is needed to provide farmers, extension agents, and households with knowledge and skills on insect farming, marketing, nutrition and product development. The results of this study can support the government to design policies to promote the insect sector in Myanmar and to raise awareness among consumers on nutrition and health benefits of eating insects.
Keywords: Cricket, consumption, marketing, production, silkworm
Contact Address: Aye Aye Myint, Yezin Agricultural University, Department of Animal Science, Yezin, 15013 Zayarthiri, Burma, e-mail: ayeayemyint2006gmail.com