Lara Hanlon came up with éntomo as a project for her design degree at the Dun Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design and Technology in Ireland.
Named after entomophagy - the practise of eating insects- the online resource for web and iPad uses research, recipes, events and education facilities to confront the prejudices associated with eating creepy-crawlies.
"Eating bugs is not a modern phenomenon," said the designer. "Entomophagy has been part of many world cultures for thousands of years and today in Thailand, South America, and China, bugs are considered a great delicacy."
Hanlon wrote and designed all the content for éntomo, which highlights the sustainability and health benefits of eating insects over other foods. The site also has an online shop where visitors can buy insects such as crickets, grasshoppers and weaver ants that have been seasoned.
"Global warming caused by livestock and an increase in human population means that there is a genuine need for a more sustainable system of food production," she said. "An important food source for humans as well as many animals, insects can provide us with an efficient, safe, sustainable, and healthy global food supply in response to these growing concerns."
When designing the site's logo, Hanlon drew on the Greek word entomon, which means cut in two - like the body of an insect. The designer deliberately divided each letter in two to create the identity for use in both print and video.
The website features close-range, gourmet images of insects in food as well as simple, black silhouettes used for the info-graphics - all shot or designed by Hanlon.
The project won the New Star Award at the Shenzhen Design Awards for Young Talents in China. In association with UNESCO, this prize awards projects for their urban sustainability credentials and ability to improve the standard of living in cities across the world.
There's been a growing interest in normalising insects for food recently, including an insect-breeding kitchen appliance that we featured recently.
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