Nordic Food Labs x Pestival

Exploring the deliciousness of insects

Curator: Bridget Nicholls | Partner: Nordic Food Labs, NOMA, Professor Marcel Dicke, Wellcome Collection | Sponsor: Lindisfarne Mead

Credit: Wellcome Library, London. Wellcome Images

Enterprising entomophagy

World-renowned culinary research institute founded by Noma restaurant unveiled their latest experiments in insect cuisine at Pestival’s Who’s The Pest.
While insects are regularly eaten by almost 80% of the worlds population, it is still an unpopular notion in the UK. But as the global population continues to grow, there is a growing move towards eating insects as a staple part of our diet.

Credit: Wellcome Library, London. Wellcome Images

Shaking up protein

Nordic Food Labs presented their creations over two evenings at the Wellcome Collection, aptly named Exploring the Deliciousness of Insects. Researchers from the Nordic Food Lab are still looking at exciting new ways to persuade people to get their protein from insects. The event began with insect ambassador and TED speaker Prof Marcel Dicke making an appetising case for adding insects to everyone’s diet and was followed by an insect canapé menu especially created and cooked by the culinary research institute, Nordic Food Lab. This presented a rare chance to the 120 dinners to challenge their palates and sample exquisite insect cuisine. Despite the ticket price (£50 per person per evening), the two evenings were sold out after two days, highlighting the huge interest and curiosity on entomophagy. The menu presented 5 large canapés with a range of insects from ants, moths and bee larvae to especially brewed beer and tailored gin.

On eating insects

You can read more about the collaboration in Nordic Food Lab’s Phaidon publication, On Eating Insects; the first book to take a holistic look at the subject, presenting essays on the cultural, political, and ecological significance of eating insects, alongside stories from the field, tasting notes, and recipes by the Nordic Food Lab.

Pestival again were the zeitgeists of a trend, shining a light on this global issue. The event had wide press coverage, both national and international. The Pestival Nordic Food Lab Dinners sold out within days and the events were covered by BBC News, The Guardian and Londonist.

Press highlights:
Culture 24

The Guardian

BBC News

For Pestival and the Wellcome, this show has a common purpose in putting the interdependence of humans, environment and health under the microscope.

Mary Stevens | Culture 24