Interview with Tomohito Nakayama, Administrator of the Entomophagy Facebook Group.
How were you involved in edible insects world?
It was due to my curiosity: I found informations about entomophagy communities on the web and I decided to join one of them.
What is the relation between japenese people and insects?
Some love insects and others hate them.
Generally speaking, a lot of japanese love playing with insect in childhood, but when they become adult, many of them lose that interest.
And with entomophagy?
It is told that eating insect was practiced in old history of Japan to some extent, but a very few of that entomophagy culture remains today.
Is the edible insects market growing in Japan?
It seems some business around edible insects started.
I saw two kind of players existing: one is new-edible-insects-business oriented, on the other hand there’s people historically involved in entomophagy and in sericulture trying to develop their business as re-newed one.
Is entomophagy something we can define “practiced” in Tokyo and in the other big cities of Japan?
In Tokyo many newbies (including me) are practicing entomophagy in bug-eating events and some of them practice it in their daily life.
I don’t know much about the situation in other big cities…however, Tokyo influences other cities in Japan.
Are you involved in Japan Edible Insects Festival? Let’s know more about.
Well. I’m not directly involved in Japan Edible Insects Festival, but the organizers of that event are my friends and I’m a kind of “sympathizer”.
Japan Edible Insects Festival has generated a very unique community based on the event and I think that uniqueness comes from the “rural atmosphere in the city”.
Do you think that the “italian insect” could be more appreciated in Japan than insects breeded and processed somewhere else in Europe?
I think “Italian insect” can be a brand. But it is also true for “French insect” or “German insect”.
Anyway, people in Japan is surprised knowing that edible insects could come also from Europe, and this surprise could stimulate the curiosity to try them.
Do you have italian friends living in Japan that are real bug-food lovers?
What will entomophagy be in the world in ten years?
I think extreme changes in the actual situation will not happen, even if entomophagy will grow more in the near future. Infact entomophagy is not new in the world, in some areas insects are/were eaten as one of daily food.
However I think one of the most important point for its future is the “scale”: if entomophagy will grow in a larger scale, many individuals will change their food habits inducing others to do the same.