Man dies after roach-eating contest

The winner of a cockroach-eating contest in South Florida died shortly after downing dozens of the live bugs as well as worms, authorities said.

The grand prize in the contest was a live python.

The Broward County sheriff's office said in a news release that it is waiting for a post-mortem to give the official cause of death.

However, the news release said 32-year-old Edward Archbold became ill soon after winning and collapsed in front of the Ben Siegel Reptile Store where the contest was held.

The store is in Deerfield Beach about 40 miles north of Miami.

Mr Archbold was taken to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Police said several contestants ate insects but no one else became ill.

Michael Adams, professor of entomology at the University of California at Riverside, said he had never heard of someone dying after eating cockroaches.

"Unless the roaches were contaminated with some bacteria or other pathogens, I don't think that cockroaches would be unsafe to eat," he said.

"Some people do have allergies to roaches, but there are no toxins in roaches or related insects."