It would come as a surprise to most to know that around 2 billion people around the world eat microproteins like cricket powder. It would also be shocking to think that despite the years of product improvement and endless consumer choice, based on our individual dietary preferences, that there hasn’t been a better tasting, easier to digest, and environmentally friendlier protein… until now.
Hi! – which stands for Human Improvement – is an extraordinary superfood protein powder that boosts gut health, energy & mood. The secret ingredient? Sustainable superfood, cricket powder!
“I asked, ‘what’s the most efficacious food source out there, that’s great for you and great for the environment? Easy; it’s insects. We’ve known this for thousands of years, but the problem is [no one in the Western world] eats insects.”
We chatted with Josh Campbell, the CEO and Co-Founder of hi! Human Improvement about how he threw out the rule book and reimagined protein powder from the ground up, and to the masses.
“I took a deep dive into it, started looking at the landscape and realized that it was not a product problem; it was a marketing problem. It’s kind of like, if marketers were to bring Jell-O to market today and say, ‘hey, by the way, it’s ground up cow bones and sugar, do you want some?’”
It’s important to note that Josh’s resume leading up to his latest venture is nothing short of spectacular. He also has an acumen for spotting trends as they are on the tipping point of being instrumental in defining brand culture. As VP of Saje Natural Wellness – a major pioneer in the essential oils and wellness industry, president of Dosist – a trailblazing cannabis company, and as an advisor on Ace brands – Canadian liquor and beverage – he is brilliant at bringing unconventional businesses to life, and is a fan himself of the consumer experience. This time, it just so happens to be with crickets.
As conscious consumers, we are being more thoughtful in where we purchase our everyday products from, paying particular interest to what we eat. If you – like me – buy your protein from online retailers, when it arrives in the mail, it’s disappointing to see the excess packaging, a half filled tube inside a box, cushioned with bubble wrap. What a waste and often, what a mess. Additionally, the labels are clad with the attractive buzzwords that companies use as clickbait, without really diving into what it all means. What makes hi! So enticing is that they essentially cut out all the malarky we’re often fed with, and only add what’s good for the body. Using just 13 simple, nutrient packed ingredients, they did away with the gums, fillers and added sugars that are in many other protein powders, and added some good stuff, like essential amino acids Vitamin B12, Fibre, and Prebiotics.
So why crickets? Let’s go over the facts:
To produce the same amount of protein, crickets require only 7% of the space that livestock need
Crickets require 20% of the water that livestock do and their waste doesn’t run off into the water system
Cricket protein powder emits 93% less Greenhouse Gasses (GHGs) than livestock. Considering more than half of all global GHSs come from livestock, this is huge for our environment
They use 90% less plastic, with no scoops, no tubs and no mess, which means the average person saves 844 water bottles worth of plastic per year by switching from traditional protein tubs to these recyclable packets
Crickets are a big Canadian business, with the majority of theirs being organically grown in Peterborough, Ontario
These are stark, but very real statistics, but the good news is that as consumers with information, we can make informed decisions on where our dollars go and how we fuel our bodies. “We actually launched the first recyclable sachet. We use 90%, less plastic than the tub and scoop, which is pretty wild. So not only we kind of pioneered the actual powder, but the packaging as well; it’s all recycled and everything folds flat. From farm to blender, we are – by far – the most sustainable by a country mile, as we say.”
What’s in it for someone to try this unconventional product? Not only does it taste good, but female consumers love it because it eliminates bloat (huge plus!), and because of the gut boosting prebiotics, it’s likely you’ll see a massive change in your skin for the better.
“We always offer a hundred percent money back guarantee, so there’s no risk to consumers to try it. We like taking the challenge though. People are generally surprised by how good it is. It is bar none, the best tasting protein powder you’ll ever try. And it makes you feel amazing.” Coming from Josh Campbell himself, that’s saying something.
Check out their Museum of Smoothies for a library of delicious smoothies recipes for you to try.