How much Protein in Wet weight Crickets / Cricket Powder?

I'm struggling to find a definitive answer to each of the above. I appreciate different species and particularly diet make a difference to the final result but the variance in reported results is absolutely huge. I've read academic papers claiming crickets are c20% protein, increasing to around 40% when various oils and fat are removed (for Ach Dom):

The report above quotes other studies claiming the same.

However, there are numerous commercial concerns quoting 60-70% protein content for crickets in both a wet weight and powdered form, complete with nutritional breakdown tables.

Can anyone shed any light on the disceprancy?



  • Hi Mattyjmurray, - A quote of 60-70% protein for cricket content can not be for fresh crickets. If read that it is either a mistake that escaped proofreading by the scientific author(s) or an editorial mistake by a layman; a "commercial concern" marketer may publish such information it does not fully understand.

    I think your above link makes it clear that the discrepancy between total amino acids & total protein is due to some protein tied up with chitin. A recent Forum thread refers to Kenyan data on the different chitin content of crickets at different ages.

    Chitin based features are often not more than 50% pure chitin; the % of chitin & the % of protein (as well as amino acids in that protein) is not uniform throughout every chitin based structure. It seems likely that the recent Forum thread referencing one commercial Thai producer's data on protein content(s) is for 2 kinds of crickets that were harvested before the chitin became too rough - yet gives no idea of their age.

    What one needs to figure out is how old, rather than merely how big (weight), a cricket they want to bring to market. If for cricket "flour" then the determinate factor is likely when does it grind to an ideal size particle & what residual moisture content is suitable for the "flour" product.

    When discussing de-fatted insect meal this means the total mass (weight) has been reduced by whatever that fat/oil was removed. The original protein content of the bug stays the same but the original bug weight has changed; this makes the % by weight of protein greater since took away some of original weight. Likewise, if a method used altered original moisture content & another team used a different moisture content then the relative % of protein (by weight to bug weight) reported can be different.

    It may be useful to use recent Forum thread Thai data as a guideline for protein content because it represents an average for profitable open air production. In laboratory research data the conditions are often closely controlled & some of those research diets used may be more costly (ex: high protein diet) than what medium scale (at least 50 big rearing pens) find economical to feed.

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