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Boulder-based Mad Agriculture won the Judge’s Choice Award. (photo by Rebecca Stumpf)

The Boulder edition of FoodBytes! was held Oct. 26

Ever consider tossing a few crickets or mealworms into your homemade pasta sauce as it simmers on the stove? Probably not, but the folks at One Hop Kitchen did. Insects, after all, are a highly touted source of protein, with less saturated fat and cholesterol than beef—and a much lighter footprint on the earth.

Toronto–based One Hop Kitchen was one of the 10 innovative food, agribusiness or tech startups selected from more than 150 entries as a finalist for the Boulder edition of FoodBytes!, held on Oct. 26. Each of the finalists gave a 5-minute pitch to the judges, who then decided which company earned the right to meet with investors, executives and industry leaders for help in growing their business. Ten other companies were also chosen to give shorter, 60-second pitches.

Three awards were given at the ceremony, with Boulder-based Mad Agriculture taking home the Judge’s Choice Award. Mad Agriculture, like One Hop Kitchen, believes in the power of insects—the company “harnesses the nutrient recycling abilities of insects to turn food waste into a protein-rich feed supplement, lessening dependence on unsustainable ingredients like fishmeal and soy.”

 

The People’s Choice Award was given to Denver’s The Honest Stand. (photo courtesy the Honest Stand)
The People’s Choice Award was given
to Denver’s The Honest Stand. (photo courtesy the Honest Stand)

The People’s Choice Award was given to Denver’s The Honest Stand, a gourmet food company that makes vegan, gluten-free, paleo, soy-free, yeast-free, cholesterol-free, non-GMO cheese sauces in four varieties, like nacho and blue.

And the Highly Commended Award, meant for one of the non-finalist companies, went to FarmRaiser, a nationwide fundraising platform that connects schools with healthy, farm-fresh and local foods that they can sell to earn money.

To find out more about FoodBytes!, visit www.foodbytesworld.com. And if you’re game to try that insect pasta sauce, you’re in luck. Even though One Hop Kitchen didn’t win this competition, you can buy Cricket Bolognese or Mealworm Bolognese from their website at www.onehopkitchen.com.

—Lisa Truesdale