Tag: Food

Clever Approach: Ocean Clean Up and Maggot Protein

Bloomberg TicToc_The Ocean Cleanup 10/27/19 (YouTube Video) 

Boat that picks up plastic from rivers before reaching the oceans. Pretty sweet.

Bloomberg – Leading Maggot Farmer to Expand From Cape Town to California – Antony Sguazzin 10/30/19

The company behind the world’s first industrial-scale maggot farm based on organic waste plans to kick off its international expansion with a plant in California next year, taking advantage of two global problems: a shortage of protein and an abundance of trash.

The plant in Jurupa Valley will be followed by operations in the Netherlands and Belgium, and is part of a drive by AgriProtein and a handful of competitors worldwide to tap into demand for high-grade protein for fish and poultry feed and offer a solution for the unwanted organic waste that cities and farms produce.

“The world is long on waste and short on protein,” Jason Drew, AgriProtein’s chief executive officer, said in an interview.

The California operation will be modeled on the facility in Cape Town, which rears black soldier flies on about 250 metric tons of organic waste daily. The flies’ larvae are then harvested to produce 4,000 metric tons of protein meal a year. At any one time, including eggs, there are 8.4 billion flies in the factory.

The plant also produces 3,500 tons of fatty acid oil and 16,500 tons of frass, or maggot droppings, which is used as fertilizer. 

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Chicken Thighs vs. Chicken Breasts

Bloomberg – Americans Are Finally Getting Tired of Chicken Breasts – Leslie Patton and Lydia Mulvany 7/17

You may have noticed that your chicken (at least in the US) has been more flavorful of late.

For decades, the chicken breast has been America’s darling. Now everybody, it seems, is doubling down on thighs.

In the U.S., production is at a record high. Retail sales of thighs have jumped nine-fold in the past decade, and restaurants are buying more dark meat, too, according to Tyson Foods Inc., the largest U.S. meat processor.

“Consumers’ palates are changing,” said Sabrina Bewley, Tyson’s senior director of food service poultry marketing and innovation. “They seek out more Latin, Indian and East Asian dishes, which often feature dark meat.”

The fate of chicken breasts can be blamed partly on the poultry industry, which created birds so big-chested that some developed a tough, coarse texture that’s come to be known as “woody breast.”

Demand is so high for thighs that prices have eclipsed that of the traditionally more expensive breasts. As of July 10, jumbo boneless, skinless chicken breasts were $1.13 a pound, and the equivalent boneless, skinless thighs were $1.24, according to Russ Whitman, senior vice president at commodity researcher Urner Barry.

It’s a reversal of white meat’s decades-long U.S. market domination. Dark meat has always been more popular abroad, but breasts became the big thing in the U.S. in the 1980s when producers started cutting up birds for the sake of convenience. Before that, consumers bought whole birds, and it was up to home cooks to do the dismembering. White meat caught on because it was lower in fat and perceived to be healthier, while the dark meat was often added to sausage or shipped overseas to other countries…

The dark meat helps form a tasty gravy, and it’s more nutritionally dense, said John Umlauf, the company’s (frozen-food maker Saffron Road) senior vice president of culinary operations.

“The dark meat has more blood in it,” he said. “That’s why it’s juicier. White meat can dry out.”

Historically, thighs were more attractive to frugal shoppers. Now it’s the taste and the ease of preparation.