It makes sense that a country known for eating fermented herring would host a Disgusting Food Museum.
Sweden’s famously stinky fish dish, surströmming, has some serious competition from foods on exhibit, including a bull penis from China, frog smoothies from Peru and Scotland’s infamous boiled entrails in sheep’s stomach, haggis.
“Disgust is cultural. We like the foods we have grown up with,” says Andreas Ahrens, director of the museum in the southern city of Malmo. “Disgust is highly individual. The thought of eating a spider makes some people hungry but makes others want to vomit,” he adds.
Ahrens’ favourite exhibit? Casa Marzu, a fly larvae-infested cheese, because diners have to cover their eyes to avoid the jumping maggots.
Many of the exhibits feature real food, some of which visitors are allowed to taste. A special section dedicated to cheese allows visitors to sniff “the world’s stinkiest” – if they’re brave enough.
In exploring the idea of why certain foods are considered disgusting, curator Samuel West says he hopes people will be more open to other, more sustainable forms of food, such as insects or lab-grown meat.
“Which is more disgusting, eating a guinea pig or a regular pig – is there really any difference?” he asks. Cuy, or roasted guinea pig from Peru, is one of the exhibits at the museum, by the way.
The museum is open through Jan 27. Adult admission costs €18 (RM85), while children are free with an adult. – dpa