Cities & Farmers pioneers edible insect-based super food in Korea

김태인 기자l승인2019.09.30

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▲ Cities & Farmers Co / CEO Jingwon Kim

According to the UN, the world population is around 7.3 billion as of 2019, around 8.5 billion by 2030, 9.6 billion by 2050 and 11.2 billion by 2100. The problem is whether we have that much food to feed all of these people. Naturally, the governments and entrepreneurs are looking for the food that can solve this problem. Among many candidates, edible insects are rising as promising future food.  

Cities & Farmers Co located in Sancheong County is an edible insect specialist. CEO Jingwon Kim used to a big shot in the stock business but had kept in his deep down to live in a rural area one day. So 3 years ago, he made his choice and let everything behind and moved down to Sancheong County. 

“I think it was the call of the wild. So I named my business Cities & Farmers to bridge city dwellers to where they came from. Cities & Farmers grows edible insects that can be made into medicine and anti-aging food in eco-friendly way so that more people can enjoy healthier food” says Kim.

Cities & Farmers makes darkling beetles into powders. A darkling beetle contains 58.5% protein which makes it one of the highly condensed protein foods. It has 2.5 times more protein than beef and its unsaturated fatty acid is surprising 38.5%. It is rich in minerals which are good for anti-aging, anti-dementia and anti-inflammatory. The power was registered as an edible insect food material on 28th January 2016. Westerners call darkling beetles ‘mealworm and is widely known as super food. 

Apart from mealworm super food, Cities & Farmers makes matrimony vine-based food. Matrimony vine is known as the elixir plant of Qin Shi Huang, the first emperor of a unified China. The plant is an excellent antioxidant and Compendium of Materia Medica, a Chinese herbology, records it activates lung and kidney, improves eye sight and lightens body. At an antioxidation test broadcast by the BBC, matrimony vine contains 25,100 times more vitamin than orange and strawberry. 

“Our matrimony vine products are made through 9 times of steaming and drying and we remove all unnecessary substances but contain only the beneficial and active ingredients. While the quality is guaranteed, the price is relatively affordable so that everybody can enjoy this super food without a burden from their wallet”

In 2017, Cities & Farmers signed a contract with the Gyeongsangnam-do Agricultural Research & Extension Services for trading patented technology of making rice panghwa snack. Cities & Farmers is to add the power to this rice snack in order to upgrade its taste and nutritional value. 

“My goal is to grow Cities & Farmers as the best edible insect company in South Korea. For this, I will keep pushing forward my passion so that more people can enjoy healthier food and snack.”


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