The next five years will be buzzing in the edible insects space with researchers predicting strong growth.

Researcher Global Market Insights is predicting global industry gains of more than 40 per cent, with the market for insect protein bars tipped to grow at over 42 per cent CAGR, through to 2023.

Cricket, mealworm, and grasshopper are the main sources of protein being used, the researcher said.

US researcher Goldstein Research says the market was worth $US35 million in 2016, although it predicting more modest growth at a CAGR of six per cent to 2024, with Europe expected to witness the highest growth.

Goldstein predicts, however, that the use of edible insects in animal feed will increase by 70 per cent by 2050, translating into a major boost to the demand for edible insects.

The benefits of insects include a lower carbon footrprint and sustainable credentials, and their high nutritional value.

“However, lack of awareness and preconceived notions regarding insect consumption hamper the growth of the edible insects market in several regions,” Goldstein said.