When I saw an online ad for Bug Bakes, I was certain I’d seen the brand somewhere before. A quick Google search reminded me of CEO Ross Lamond’s appearance on Dragon’s Den, where he pitched the insect protein based treats.
On the show Touker Suleyman was the only dragon to make an offer for £50,000 for half of the company. After some negotiation, a deal was struck – but off camera, the investment never completed.
Ross has however, gone on to build his brand, marketing insect pet food as a more sustainable option. Bug Bakes’ mission statement is ‘to reduce the environmental impact of pet ownership by making products which are as good for your dog as they are for the planet.’
Bug Bakes was born after Ross discovered the effects of livestock farming on the planet, whilst studying at The University of Glasgow. He and his dog, Lyra, created the UK’s first dog treat with sustainable insect protein, and selling them at markets.
On the Bug Bakes website, you can order a free sample of their cold-pressed dog food, just paying £1.95 for postage. The sample includes two meals – one regular and one grain-free – and is a great way to see if your dog likes the food before committing to a full bag.
This particular food is made with sustainable farmed Yellow Mealworms. According to Bug Bakes ‘they require thousands of times less water, hundreds of times less greenhouse gases and dozens of times less feed and land to produce the same amount of protein as livestock’.
The benefits of insect based protein includes that it’s low in calories and fat, high in iron, calcium and fibre, lower in resource consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. Sustainability is something very close to the brands’ overall ethos, even using plastic free compostable packaging with their samples and full sized bags.
The Scamps decided to test out the cold-pressed food, which we thought smelled a little like the goat food you might buy at a farm? The food itself looks like little compact pellets or corks, made with the insect meal, as well as wonky fruit and veg. The regular recipe features 28% mealworm, 27% barley, 13% oats and a number of fruit, veg, seeds, minerals and vitamins, with 354 calories per 100g.
Upon taste testing, Phoebe was curious at first and give it a good sniff before daring to try it. Once she’d tried some, though, she was more than happy to eat the Bug Bakes kibble. Frank, on the other hand, was less impressed with the food and had quite an unusual way of showing it – watch out TikTok video below to see his reaction. This is something I’ve never seen him do to food – not even one’s he’s not a huge fan of, like blueberries.
The Bug Bakes food costs £5.89 per kilogram, which is slightly more expensive than the food Phoebe and Frank are currently on. Whilst we love the idea of the insect protein based pet food – and wish Ross the best of luck – it’s not a product we’d be looking to repurchase. Frank says he much prefers chicken.