A Valentine's love bite with a difference

Imported giant water bugs from Thailand were on the menu for a special Valentine's Day-themed event in Tokyo.

(REUTERS) - A bunch of flowers? A box of chocolates? Or some caramelised worms with walnuts?

Catching the Valentine's bug, this bar in Tokyo has concocted a specially themed menu.

"The insects are crispy like the skin of walnuts and go pretty well with chocolate. I hope this will be made into a product.", said Sayumi Makino, diner.

The most popular treats for the loved-up couples include cranberry and water bug cocktails and cakes topped with bug bodies and innards.
Insects aren't commonly eaten across Japan.

But the event's organiser is keen to promote them as an alternative food source.

"I love insects and I think its really fun to eat them. I'm quite confident of their potential and how attractive they are. Eating insects is now in the spotlight from the point of view of food sustainability.", said Yuta Shinohara, organizer of the bug eating event.

The UN has recognised insects as a more environmentally-friendly source of protein.

Around a billion Valentine's cards are sent globally each year and millions of pounds splashed out on roses.

For these couples at least, the creepy crawly admirers accompanying their romantic night out are a welcome change from tradition.