Japanese airline offers insect-based in-flight meals to passengers

Japanese airline offers insect-based in-flight meals to passengers

Tokyo: Zipair Tokyo Inc has begun selling in-flight meals made with cricket powder, this is the first time a Japanese domestic airline has adopted insect-based food for in-flight meals.

Edible crickets are gaining traction as environmentally friendly food, and the hope is that environment-conscious customers will want to dig into the new offerings.

The airline developed the meals — a tomato chilli burger and “pescatore” seafood pasta — in cooperation with Naruto, Tokushima Prefecture-based Gryllus Inc., a venture firm that emerged from Tokushima University and that researches cricket-derived foods.

Both meals cost 1,500 yen (AED41) and must be reserved. Each dish contains 4.5 grams of edible cricket powder developed by Gryllus, mixed into the burger buns and patties, and into the pasta’s tomato sauce.

In-flight catering company chef Keita Masuda, who developed the meals, said of the cricket powder’s appeal, “The powder has a shrimpy taste and nutty aroma, and using it expands the food’s umami flavour.”

According to Gryllus, edible crickets require less food than livestock and mature far more quickly. High in protein and rich in vitamins and minerals, they are expected to be one solution to food shortages. Cricket powder has already found its way into commercial rice crackers and cookies, and Gryllus President Takahito Watanabe is eager to “have crickets take root in society as a new food.”

About Zipair Tokyo

ZIPAIR Tokyo is a low-cost Japanese airline. The airline is based at Tokyo Narita International Airport (NRT) and flies to medium-haul and long-haul destinations. Currently, the airline offers flights to Seoul and Bangkok.

The airline was created in 2019 as a subsidiary of Japan Airlines and is set to launch flights to Seoul and Bangkok in mid-2020, in time for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. After that, the airline plans to launch flights to destinations on the US West Coast in 2021. ZIPAIR Tokyo will operate using two Boeing 787-8 aircraft.

Source: Agencies Cricket dish Japan flight Cricket dish Japan flight

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