Is the excrement of any living being eaten by humans anywhere

You guys stole my answer of “yeast”

I used to have this quote on the wall of my brewery lab from a book by Friederich Wöhler (in the early days of microscopy):

Jenkem, with the following caveats: (1) It’s not actually consumed, but used as a hallucinogenic inhalant; and (2) it’s probably an urban legend.

My guess about the price seems to be correct. Google produced these numbers:

organic coffee beans: $15.00 / 12 oz
Kopi Luwak civit poop coffee beans: $51.88 / 2 oz
Jacu birdshit coffee beans: $64.00 / 1.8 oz

In general birds do seem to be a better judge of quality and ripeness than the mammals who also do a pretty good job. As evidenced by my own fruit trees birds tend to be slightly more discerning than mammals. I never could understand this as supposedly birds have no sense of smell or taste. They must have something at least comparable.

Of course, Wöhler might not have known any better, but yeast don’t have anything really comparable to intestines, urinary organs, an anus, or genitals, and the alcohol and carbon dioxide produced by them don’t really fit into the categories of “pee” and “poop”.

This column might be relevant…

Oh I know, part of my job was propagating yeast, counting yeast on a hematocytometer, plating yeast, etc. I always half suspected he was joking in his descriptions, but when you work with yeast every day, you can’t help enjoying a quote that describes them as having “enormously large genitals” :smiley:

Hey, eating an excretion of an animal is positively Biblical!

“Manna” is thought to have been the sugary excretion from certain species of insects:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manna

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Honeydew_(secretion)

Unlike honey, this is a product extruded from the anus - it isn’t used or wanted by the insect itself.

I heard on a podcast that Sami people would drink the urine of reindeer that ate psychedelic mushrooms as a means of ingesting the psychedelic compounds. Not sure why they wouldn’t eat the mushrooms themselves though…

The notion was I think that the reindeer would strain out whatever caused the undesirable side effects of eating the mushrooms, leaving just the good psychoactive chemicals behind in their pee.

Dunno if this counts though, as they aren’t drinking pee for its food value. Lots of cultures used pee or shit of various sorts in drugs (we did, with horse urine used in hormone replacement pills, I think).

https://pubs.acs.org/cen/coverstory/83/8325/8325premarin.html

You should read the Egyptian Book of the Dead. A very large percentage of the prayers within involve ‘not being made to eat feces’ or making your enemy eat feces.

Must’ve been a very strange society when so many of their prayers about their own deaths or involvements with others revolve around eating shit. :eek:

So … “die and eat shit” rather than “eat shit and die”? :smiley:

Ah! I finally understand these lyrics from Frozen:

And the Aztec priests would fast, and then eat shrooms and drink a lot of water. Their urine was then collected and passed out for others to drink as part of the ceremony.

The urine isn’t used directly as an ingredient in Premarin, though. Estrogen is extracted from the urine, and the estrogen is used to make Premarin.

Well, of course - it says that in the article I linked to: its an extract from pregnant mare’s piss.

I’m pretty certain that the shamans drinking reindeer piss would, if they could, extract the psychoactive factors in the piss and take that, and throw out the rest of the piss … if they had the tech.

In short, it isn’t the piss that they want, it is the valuable drug contained in the piss.

Contrast with “manna”, in which the excretion of the insect is the sugary food itself.

Hence why the Aztec priests would fast and drink only water, to remove all the other stuff from their urine before sharing it.

In the novel “Shaman” by Kim Stanley Robinson, an old woman describes eating her own feces in times of extreme hardship. YES YES I KNOW IT’S FICTION, but would there be any way of testing human coprolites to determine if any had been re-ingested? Our close relatives the apes will sometimes eat their own excrement so it doesn’t seem completely out of the question.

There’s a “Dirty Jobs” episode where Mike Rowe is on a camel farm, and the farmer tells him that Bedouin tribespeople to this day sometimes swallow camel pellets to protect them against dysentery and other water- and food-borne diseases.

It sounds like the Sami urine-drinking thing is done because the mushrooms are poisonous to people but not reindeer, and the hallucinogenic component is indeed excreted in their urine. One wonders how they collect it. :confused:

This one wonders how they discovered it. What led someone to drink reindeer pee in the first place?