Answer to locust swarms? Town puts them on pizza
Swarms of locusts have left towns trying to find creative ways to get rid of them.
As locusts swarm across Australia, folks are finding a way to get back at the insects that devour crops â€“ eat â€˜em!
One cafÃ© in Mildura, northern Victoria state, is offering locusts as a crunchy topping for pizza, CNN affiliate ABC news reports.
The idea for the dish came from the mayor of the town of 60,000, Glen Milne, according to ABC. The politician rounded up locusts in a garbage bag in the townâ€™s center.
“You can’t stop finding them when they get killed on your car, but it’s another story when you get out on the oval and try to catch them,” he told ABC.
Locusts as lunch seems appropriate for the town whose Web site touts it as â€œthe center of Victoriaâ€™s Food Bowl.â€
â€œMost of Australia’s dried fruit, grapes, citrus, almonds, pistachios, olives, carrots, and asparagus are grown in the Mildura region,â€ the Web site says.
Would locusts be a good addition to that list of crops?
The Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations reports that dried locusts are about 62 percent protein and can be prepared in stir fry, roasted or boiled. It even offers a few recipes, pizza not among them.
The Australian Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry says heavy rainfall has created ideal conditions for locust breeding and swarms are expected to worsen over broad areas of the country.[/i]
It would only be a short time offer as they move on very quickly - as soon as they strip all the vegetation.
Gee there are some dumb people claiming to be Aussies who come up with stupid ideas.
We have a similar thing happening here in the U.S. The locust (grass hopper) populations are up dramatically in our western states and it is speculated that their affect on agricultural crops will be significant this year. Many states have already started an aggressive spraying program to help reduce the numbers. When we had the last outbreak, back about 1980, our sons were young and they were raising chickens for both food and eggs. We used to turn the chickens out into the yard and let them chase down the pesky “hoppers” every day. It didn’t take too long before they had the population under control on our 11-acres. OK, boys are grown, and we don’t have chickens any more, Hummmm. How do they taste? I’m going to have to start watching the pizzas being made in our western states for a new topping. You’re right, if ya can’t beat then, eat them! But does it have to be on pizza???
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor