'Crunch, crunch!' Protein-rich locusts might be coming to a dinner plate near you

Packed full of protein and environmentally friendly to farm. The catch? There's also six legs and a set of wings to digest.

Registered as New Zealand's only farmer of locusts for human consumption, Dunedin man Malcom Diack has filled two shipping containers with more than 20,000 locusts, an insect he thinks could soon be a regular food source.

"It's something that we need in the future. We're running out of food and protein worldwide," he says.

When Mr Diack started the company in 2009, eating bugs was seen as strange. Fast forward nine years and the demand is surging.

"People aren't so surprised now. Four or five years ago people thought it was strange, but now they've heard of it," he says.

Mr Diack supplies several restaurants around New Zealand, with Dunedin restaurant Glenfalloch co-owner Hannes Bareiter a regular buyer.

"Some guests have got to taste the locust and now they actually come and ask for them," he says.

Mr Bareiter says there are several ways to cook the insect, from pan frying them, to deep fried or covered in chocolate.

He also believes the stigma around eating insects, is starting to change.

"As soon as it goes in your mouth, people often change their mind," he says.

Dunedin man Malcolm Diack has New Zealand's only locust farm registered for human consumption. Source: 1 NEWS