Edible insects runaway success for Loire Valley deli

The highly popular products are sold for 450 euros per kilo in the shop

A delicatessen in the Loire Valley specialising in edible insects has soared in popularity since introducing the unusual products.

La Mesure grocery shop in Chécy in the Berry region (Cher, Centre-Val-de-Loire) sells all the usual products found in any local delicatessen - including flour, pasta and sweets - but also offers an array of worms, crickets, grasshoppers and scorpions.

Dried and spiced with paprika, curry, mustard or honey, the insect products have been flying off the shelves since they were introduced in June, with the shop selling over 5 kg of insects in less than three months; significant given their small size and weight.

Edible insects are traditionally found in Asia, Africa and South America, but have become more popular and fashionable in Europe in recent years too, and farms now exist here.

Enterprising La Mesure owner Ludivine Colin-Le Guern buys the insects online, prepares the marinades and flavours on-site, and is then able to resell them at a very lucrative price.

“My shop sells them for 450 euros per kilo,” explains Colin-Le Guern, speaking to FranceInfo. “It sounds expensive; but then, 10 grams of worms is a lot of worms. The price can seem intimidating, but actually the quantities are significant.”

Customers are usually wary of the products at first, Colin-Le Guern says, but once they taste the insects, they find them to be delicious.

“I never imagined that so many people would be so curious, and interested in tasting these little creatures,” Colin-Le Guern added.

She hopes to build on her success and expand her repertoire in the near future, introducing new varieties such as spiced tarantula soon.

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