Its whats for dinner in the future.
It's what's for dinner in the future.

Blade Runner 2049 opens with a man who is farming worms for protein. The farm is all machines, a humble home, and one dead tree. Cows, clouds, and crops are gone. This is what human civilization has come down to. Machines that grow bugs. The image of them is meant to horrify us and make the future look as unfamiliar as possible. In our world, we expect our protein from the meat of domesticated farm animals. In the future, they get it from insects. In this respect, Blade Runner 2049 is much like Snowpiecer, but in the former they have become as normal as chickens and pigs are to us, where as in the latter they are "the horror, the horror."

The insects (cockroaches to be exact) in Snowpiercer, which are made into dark-brown protein bars and served to the poor on the world-bound train (the rich eat sustainable sushi), have a plot function that approximates solyent green, the mysterious food in the movie Solyent Green. The fact of what people are actually eating is revealed in the final acts of these movies. When one man in Snowpiecer sees the cockroaches in the bug-crushing machine, he almost barfs. Later, one of the leaders of the train's rich is forced to eat a protein bar while the poor take a break from the revolution to enjoy sushi.

David George Gordon, Seattle's premier bug chef, hates Snowpiecer but he does like Mad Max: Fury Road, which has a scene of Nux, one of the War Boys, eating, without a thought, a bug (a black vine weevil) that's crawling up the pretty/dirty arm of the woman, Capable, he has fallen in love with. The scene is really romantic in that post-apocalyptic way. Gordon identified for me the bugs in Blade Runner 2019. They are palm weevil larvae (or sago worms). They are considered an agricultural pest in the US. But they are in fact an excellent source of protein.

I once found a black weevil in the kale served at the deli in Whole Foods in downtown Amazonia. I was not disgusted by it. Nor did I make a complaint. I actually thought it was a sign of how healthy the kale was. I put the kale (minus the bug) in my bowl and ate it for lunch with fried chicken. Whole Foods has great fried chicken.