Like any good New Yorker, I immediately sought out food. No barbecue nor beans I found. Instead, my fork stumbled onto an unexpected variety of Middle Eastern, Mexican and Vietnamese dishes, each as delectably daring as the next.
Food companies have the challenge of turning the unpalatable into the delectable and changing long-standing cultural norms about what we put into our mouths. It is possible to fill seven billion bellies with nutrient-rich foods; but we're going to have to embrace some unorthodox ingredients.
The ingredient in question is carmine. It's a red dye extracted from the dried, pulverized bodies of the cochineal insect -- an unphotogenic arthropod native to Mexico and South America with a fondness for cactus. Dannon uses carmine in four flavors of Fruit on the Bottom yogurt.
It may have crawled into your consciousness lately that edible insects are the new green thing: for one thing, they are extremely sustainable to raise. Green is good, agree most folks. But how do they taste?