Ever eaten beetles for breakfast? Locusts for lunch? Moths for a midnight snack?
A group of adventurous HSBC employees in North America office recently feasted on crickets in their lunchtime.
The staff sat at tables together, and tucked into the insects, while sprinkling broken legs, heads and wings onto fermented soybeans, which they described as being “like Oreo sprinkles on a sundae, but buggier.”
It’s true that creepy-crawlies can provide a low-fat, low-calorie, protein-rich snack. But what does all this have to do with freshwater?
Beef burger of bug buffet?
Well, they weren’t just any banking staff. They were Citizen Science Leaders.
The employees had signed up to FreshWater Watch through the company, and spent a day with Earthwatch, taking part in real environmental science and learning all about freshwater challenges, such as the ‘embedded water’ that is hidden in the food we eat.
The concept is simple: the amount of water used to produce a single beef burger amounts to more than 2000 litres! In comparison, insects contain very little embedded water. (There’ll be an A to Z blog on surprising water footprints soon, so keep an eye out.)
The Cricket Crunch was part of a larger event in which many staff committed to eating less red meat. In that one day, the joint efforts of the employees saved an estimated 80,000 Litres of fresh water, equal to 1,000 baths.
It just goes to show how employees of any business can take their passion for FreshWater Watch to whole new levels, taking steps to preserve resources, and saving energy and money for their organisations, while using their new skills and knowledge to make positive changes in their own lives.
As one of the cricket eaters said: “I liked how a serious topic - global freshwater challenges, was transformed into something fun, entertaining and educational.”
Over to you
Talk to your workplace about signing up to FreshWater Watch, to learn how to make inspiring changes that preserve the natural resources that your business’ future depends on. (We promise not to make you eat bugs.)
Take part in the WaterBlitz. On World Water Day, 22 March, people over the world will collect FreshWater Watch data, give a presentation, or recruit a colleague as a new Citizen Science Leader. Check the WaterHub soon for more ideas on getting involved.
Find out more about our partnership with HSBC at the WaterHub
Coming next: D is for Data. Or is it datum?
A is for Alien Invasions; B is for the Biggest!; C is for Crickets in your lunchbox; D is for Data. Or is it datum?; E is for Eighty Litres of Water in an Orange; F is for Ferruginous Pochard; G is for Going, Going, Gone?; H is for Heroes; I is for Industrial Revolution; J is for Jigsaw Puzzles; K is for (Everything including the) Kitchen Sink; L is for Life itself; M is for Microbeads; N is for Namedropping