Food, from the EU green light to trade cricket powder

Food, from the EU green light to trade cricket powder
Food, from the EU green light to trade cricket powder

The house cricket is the third approved insect in the EU (after dried mealworms and migratory locust). Products containing these novel foods will be labeled to warn of any potential allergic reactions.

On 8 July 2020, the EU Commission had asked the European Food Safety Authority to carry out an assessment on the matter and on 23 March 2022, EFSA adopted an scientific opinion on the safety of partially defatted powder of whole Acheta domesticus as a new food.

For a period of five years, starting from the date of entry into force of this regulation, it is then specified in the Regulation published in the Community Official Journal, only the company “Cricket One Co. Ltd” is authorized to place the novel food based on partially defatted house cricket powder on the market within the Union, unless a subsequent applicant obtains an authorization for that novel food.

Criticisms and doubts expressed by the Italian supply chain. “Those with a desire for the exotic can eat insects, but it is a game of bad faith to promote them for a sustainable diet as an alternative to ours”, commented Luigi Scordamaglia, managing director of Filiera Italia. “No reservations, God forbid, for those who want to taste exotic ‘foods’, far from our culture, wrong and harmful, however, to present them as sustainable foods to choose as an alternative to our diet because they have less impact on the environment”, he underlined.

“These are false statements – added Scordamaglia – because our diet is not only of quality, but a low environmental impactIn fact, against the highest added value in Europe of 65 billion euros, an expression of the quality produced, the Italian agri-food sector has a correlated CO2 emission equal to 1/3 of French emissions and half of those German, not to mention the comparison with other continents.

“Furthermore – continued Scordamaglia – it should be considered that many insects contain numerous anti-nutritional elements which hinder the normal nutrient absorptionreducing their nutritional efficiency, not to mention the contaminating chemical substances and cause of intoxication, such as that which occurred in California in 2007 due to the consumption of grasshoppers imported from Mexico, substances often present in these insects, given that very often they are imported from with safety standards clearly inferior to ours”.

 
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