Last year, the European Union announced that three species of insects would be allowed for human consumption: the migratory spider cricket, the yellow mealworm and the house cricket. Now it’s official, the European Union has approved cricket and insect powder for use in a variety of baked goods and other food staples in grocery stores.
Cricket flour could be used to make bread, pasta, biscuits, beer and even chocolate, among other things. The green light came after the European Food Safety Authority verified the new powder.
If insects are used, this must be included on the product’s list of ingredients, so consumers can decide for themselves whether to buy it or not, said the EU Commission website.
They could go into such products as nuts, snacks, pizza and pasta products, bread and rolls, crackers, sauces, meat preparations and soups, cereal bars, vegetable-based dishes, and chocolate confectionery.
After a lengthy approval process, the European Food Safety Agency has scientifically examined the consumption of the insects and classified them as harmless to health. Cricket powder can also be used in soups, milk and milk products, pasta, sauces, potatoes and chocolate.
On January 26, grocery stores can stock baked goods containing powdered larvae of the mealworm. Legally, food already includes locusts and larvae of the yellow mealworm.
The food packaging displays the scientific name for bugs such as Gryllus Bimaculatus, a species of cricket known as the two-spotted cricket.
Bill Gates has long fought for a sustainable meat-free diet to save the planet.
The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation awarded $100,000 grants to companies to develop nutritionally dense food using insect species.
Congress is considering similar legislation for the use of bugs to replace meat in American stores.
So basically—read your labels.