If you need a nutritious snack, you should try crickets. Yes, seriously.

Eye on Veterans
May 17, 2019 - 10:22 am
Cowboy Cricket Farms was co-founded by USCG vets Kathy and James Rolin


James Rolin thought his wife Kathy had lost her mind. She'd just returned from a "bug buffet" at Montana State University and told James she thought they should get into the business of making food out of bugs. 

"I thought it was just a crazy idea," James said during an appearance on the Eye on Veterans radio show. "No one in the U.S. wants to do this."

As usual, according to James, Kathy was right.

The Rolins, who met while they were both serving in the Coast Guard, co-founded Cowboy Cricket Farms and the business has taken off  and their products are now found in stores like Mom's Organic Market. While there is a bit of a "gross" factor, James says most people are willing to at least give the insects a taste, particularly after they learn how good they are for you.

Lots of samples happening today! Have you tried a cricket yet? #cricketsarefood #snack #food #adventure

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"The nutritional value of a cricket is enormous," James said. "We're in Montana so we like to compare them to beef. Pound for pound, we have twice as much protein, twice as much iron and forty-three times as much Omega-3. So it's extremely nutrition dense."

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Along with being a healthy food compared to beef, pound for pound, crickets also take up a lot less room while creating far less waste, all the while requiring substantially less food and water. Even so, the demand is so high that Cowboy Crickets is actively seeking vets who are interested in farming crickets to supplement their supply. In fact, James says he'd like to see more vets get into farming in general, as it's been been shown to be good for one's mental health.

-- products can #fuel you through anything! #sb50 #champion @broncos WR @emmanuelsanders knows a little bit about #performing at the highest level. We’re a fan of his and he’s a fan of whole #crickets . We have some #signed products for some #Luckey followers. Stay tuned... #football #protein #nutrition #broncos

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"Small agriculture has been shown to be very helpful with some of the issues that we see within the veteran communities, PTSD and anxiety," James said. "It gives you a real purpose and you're able to take a lot of the same skills you learned in the military and apply it to agriculture. And crickets are one of those options."

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While the Rolins are seeking out suppliers for Cowboy Crickets, they're also standing by to help anyone interested in starting to raise crickets as a food source through a series of "how-to" videos on their YouTube channel. 

Whether you're interested in becoming a farmer or consumer of cricket snacks, James Rolin says the Cowboy Crickets team is ready for you to hop on board the crickets are food bandwagon. Pun intended.

You can hear rhe full interview with Cowboy Crickets Co-founder and COO James Rolin below.  

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