A comparative study of the proximate composition of Ruspollia differens and Macrotermes spp, two common edible insects in Uganda
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Globally, and particularly in Africa and Asia, Insects have played an important role in human nutrition. In Uganda, Longhorn grasshopper (Ruspolia differens) and termites (Macrotermes spp) have a great potential to improve human nutrition and household income. R. differens and Macrotermes spp samples were collected fresh and dry respectively, from Nakesero market, Kampala. The study determined and compared the proximate composition of R. differens and Macrotermes spp in order to inform policy and nutritional experts, which among the two edible insects or qualify both for a possible use in fighting hunger, malnutrition and food insecurity in rural Uganda. The results indicate that both insects have a high lipid content (40.97± 4.45%; R. differens and 33.17 ±2.55% for Macrotermes spp), ash content (1.4±0.2%; R. differens and 5.20±0.2% for Macrotermes spp), protein content (0.45±0.04%; R. differens and 0.13±0.02% for Macrotermes spp). Based on the results, R. differens is a richer source of nutrients than Macrotermes spp, except for ash content and thus is a better alternative to conventional protein sources.