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Edible insects a boon for farmers

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  • Writer: Denis D. Gray / AP
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THANON NANG KLARN — Depending solely on the rains to either yield a good rice crop or leave their fields dry and barren, farmers in this village in northeastern Thailand led a precarious and back-breaking existence. Then they discovered bugs. 

A woman sells fried grasshoppers and other fried insects at a stand at a gas station in Nakhon Ratchasima province, northeastern Thailand. Six-legged livestock, as UN Food and Agriculture Organization calls them, take just 3.8 litres of water, 1 kg. of feed and a small cubicle to produce a pound of crickets.

At Boontham Puthachat's home, six concrete pens seethe with crickets munching on chicken feed, pumpkins and other vegetables - treats to fatten them up before they are harvested and sold to hungry humans increasingly eager for a different type of dining experience.

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