Beetles worth 33 bucks


Insects like beetles, bamboo grub or grasshoppers are essential ingredients in many Thai dishes and are a popular snack among many, so it’s no surprise there’s a high demand for them. Ms. Sothon Salangam and her buddies in Chang Nong Bua village, Surin province have formed a squad to collect beetles that bring the group ฿1,000 (~USD33.19) a day. 


Beetles found in the flooded fields


Ms. Salangam and her team typically catch 70-100 beetles each day – a portion of those are sold and the rest are eaten as snacks.  Each beetle costs ฿10 (~USD0.33) – the group offers a special deal where if the consumer buys 3, they’d only have to pay ฿20 (~USD0.66), shared Naewna.

Surin Farmers Form For A Squad To Collect BeetlesMs. Salangam’s gang enjoying the fresh catch of the day
Image credit: Naewna

While Bangkok has been experiencing a drought, other provinces have been experiencing mass flooding – as beetles love wetlands and farms, the gang has been able to gather enough to rake in ฿1,000 (~USD33.19) a day. 

Surin Farmers Form For A Squad To Collect BeetlesTheir catch of the day in a fishing net
Image credit: Naewna 

Ms. Salangam and her crew have developed an efficient system for catching these beetles – they use a small fishing net to sweep through puddles, and are able to gather 1-4 of them for each stroke.


Some insects are nutritious


Even if some insects are nutritious and delicious, it is advisable to do extant research on which ones are edible – or just purchase them from small local businesses. 

More on food that blows your mind being sold: 


Featured images adapted from: Naewa 

Enjoying The Smart Local Thailand? Follow us on Facebook and Instagram for more stories like this