The bread is made using cricket flour, supplied by Eat Grub insect food brand and sourced from a farm with Grade A BRC food safety certification.
Each loaf contains around 336 crickets, which are dried, ground, mixed with wheat flour and grains and then baked to become a loaf with a crunchy finish.
Alison Ordonez, head of innovation, Roberts, said the Crunchy Cricket Loaf contains more protein than standard bread and is environmentally-friendly and sustainable.
“As well as having strong sustainability and environmental credentials, insects are tasty and shouldn’t be overlooked as a recipe ingredient. Our Cricket Loaf provides consumers with a good source of protein and an easy way to familiarise themselves with insect-based food,” she said.
“As the UK’s next generation bakery, we work tirelessly to stay at the forefront of food revolution. We’re passionate about boosting growth in the bread category with relevant, sustainable and interesting bakes. The first-in-the-UK Roberts Cricket Loaf is an example of this."
According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), insects are packed with good fatty acids, calcium, iron, vitamin B12 and vitamin C, as a direct consequence of plant-based feeding.
“Crickets display the highest values of antioxidant capacity (TEAC). From a nutritional point of view, insects and invertebrates represent a good source of bioavailable high-quality proteins and essential amino acids, polyunsaturated fatty acids, minerals such as iron, zinc, and potassium, B vitamins, and insoluble fiber, as chiti," the Faculty of Biosciences and Technologies for Agriculture, Food, and Environment, University of Teramo, Teramo, Italy, says in a report.
Ingredients of Roberts’ Cricket Bread (allergens in bold)
Wheat Flour (with added calcium, iron, niacin and thiamine), Water, *Cricket Powder, Malted Wheat Flakes, Yeast, Barley Malt Flour, Salt, Emulsifiers: E471, E472e, Brown Sugar, Soya Flour, Preservative: Calcium Propionate (to inhibit mould growth), Rapeseed Oil, Flour Treatment Agent: Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C)
*Allergy Info: Contains gluten and if you are allergic to shellfish, you may be allergic to insects as well
Win a loaf
“We’ve been importing and selling insects as a food source since 2013, and we’re always excited to work with like-minded manufacturers who are keen to realise their insect-innovations,” said Neil Whippey, co-founder, Eat Grub.
“It’s been great to support Roberts in what appears to a UK bakery brand first. What a great way to introduce the joys and benefits of eating insects.”
The UN estimates that at least two billion people eat insects - with many having eaten them traditionally for generations - and more than 1,900 species are used for food.
They’re also a popular choice among those who want to protect the environment because farming insects uses less land, water and feed than conventional livestock farming.
Roberts is running a competition on its Facebook page @RobertsBakeryUK to win one of 10 Crunchy Cricket loaves until December 5.
Roberts’ loaves are stocked in Asda and Morrisons stores nationally. They’re also listed in all major multiple grocers across the UK and online at Ocado, as well as Londis and Budgens convenience stores.