From farm to fork: the EU authorizes the marketing of a new insect

From farm to fork: the EU authorizes the marketing of a new insect

A few weeks ago, the European Commission gave permission for a new insect to be marketed as food within the European Union. These are the larvae of the dung beetle (Alphitobius diaperinus) in its different presentations: paste, frozen, dried or powder.

This is the fourth insect approved by the Commission for gastronomic commercialization, after the mealworm, the migratory locust and the house cricket.

This decision comes a few months after the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) concluded in a study that the consumption of the larvae of this insect is safe under the proposed conditions of use and at the proposed levels.

possible allergic reactions

The experts warned that Alphitobius diaperinus can cause hypersensitivity reactions in people allergic to shellfish and house dust mites, and recommended further research into the allergenicity of this novel food.

Likewise, they require that the products presenting the insect larvae in the authorized forms be properly labeled in accordance with Article 9 of the EU regulation.

The study by EFSA shows that dung beetle larvae in frozen and freeze-dried formulations or in the form of paste or powder can be used as an ingredient in various food products: “such as muesli bars, pasta, imitation meat and bakery products”.

At the moment, only the French company Ynsect NL BV is authorized to market this new feed within a period of five years; however, other companies may also request permission.

The authorization for the food consumption of insects such as Alphitobius diaperinus is part of the European Union’s ‘Farm to Fork’ strategy and aims to identify alternative sources of protein to promote a more sustainable food system.

Since the EU Novel Foods Regulation came into force in January 2018, EFSA has received a large number of applications for a wide variety of food sources, such as plant products, algae, non-native fruits and insects.

Source: El heraldo