Bugtoberfest slated for Oct. 19 at San Antonio Botanical Garden

Kids check out displays at the San Antonio Botanical Garden. (Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service photo)

Event includes insect-based food tasting, family activities

Writer: Paul Schattenberg, 210-859-5752, paschattenberg@ag.tamu.edu

Contact: Molly Keck, 210-631-0400, mekeck@ag.tamu.edu

The Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service in Bexar County and San Antonio Botanical Garden, or SABG, will present Bugtoberfest from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Oct. 19.

“Bugtoberfest is an event for people of all ages and is dedicated to insects and entomophagy, which is the consumption of insects as a food source,” said Molly Keck, AgriLife Extension entomologist, Bexar County. “People in many countries around the world already consume insects as part of their diet, and foods made from insects are gaining popularity in other nations, including the United States.”

From 10 a.m.-12:30 p.m. there will be a keynote presentation and four-course insect-based food tasting for $25 per person or $22.50 per SABG member. The cost is $35 per person or $31.50 per SABG member for the presentation, tasting and drink pairings for those 21 and older with a valid photo ID.

“Families can sink their teeth into four tasty and nutritious chef-demonstrated recipes featuring foods made with ingredients from different insects,” Keck said. “Local chefs will enlighten visitors about the sustainability and high protein content of insects.”

She said the program will feature Jonathan Cammack, Ph.D., chief operating officer at EVO Conversion Systems, College Station.

“EVO Conversion Systems is dedicated to harnessing the power of nature to address issues of global concern, including waste reduction, protein production and environmental conservation,” Cammack said. “Global food and feed production will not meet demand by 2050, and using insects as a food source and a means to convert food waste into protein is both practical and environmentally responsible.”

Cammack will talk about the modern entomophagy movement and the use of insects as both a food source for humans and as feed for animals. The presentation will begin at 10 a.m. with tastings to start at 11 a.m.

A variety of family activities, included with general admission to the botanical gardens, will also be available to attendees from 10 a.m.–2 p.m.

“The whole family can enjoy this expedition into entomophagy and insect-themed activities such as holding real insects and arthropods, painting with soldier fly larvae, maggot art, races with toy cars powered by real crickets, and pollinator activities.

To register, go to Bugtoberfest Four Course Insect tasting.  

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