EFSA’s Approval of Mealworms is adding growth to the Edible Insect Market
Posted On February 17, 2021
Mealworms are the larvae type of the mealworm beetle (a species of darkling beetle). They have recently become the foremost worm-based meal to be approved by the EFSA (European Food Safety Agency). It is an agency based in European Union that provides autonomous scientific advice and investigates existing and new risks associated with the food chain.
This move is a significant advancement in the Edible Insect Market as it could lead to insect-based food flourishing in European Union. This move comes at an essential time as insect-based food has continuously been a hot topic in the food industry due to its low-carbon emissions quality.
In the future, mealworms may come to be the dominant ingredient in snacks, smoothies, and other food products consumed by humans. The insects are known to be high in fiber and contain a high amount of protein as well. They provide a more sustainable way of consuming protein when compared to products that contain beef or pork. Although countries like Central America and Africa have been eating insects since time immemorial, there is an apprehension that citizens of Europe might find it to be unappetizing.
Mealworms come with several benefits and can be eaten in different forms as well. They can be dried and put the whole in dishes such as curries or grounded to prepare flour, which in turn can be used to make biscuits, pasta, and even bread.
The EFSA risk assessment of an insect as a food product may make it easier to get EU-wide approval for the same. It will also help the union to take a science-based decision that will ensure the safety of customers.
The announcement by EFSA, even though shrouded with several concerns, was still received with optimism by companies indulged in the business of manufacturing insect-based food. This step is being seen as one of many, bringing forth a new form of the food industry in Europe. With time, several EU and non-EU authorities may approve different products of this sort as they conclude over their trustworthiness.