Next stop for Bite 👉👉👉 Europe!
The European Union has joined us in the future! New regulations from the European Food Safety Authority will authorize insects for sale as a “novel food”.
This legislation is long overdue, as most European countries do not permit the sale of insects for consumption, despite over 80% of countries already doing so. The UK, Netherlands, Belgium, Denmark, and Finland have always maintained a permissive approach, as national regulators in those states deemed the EU's regulations do not to apply to animals (including insects).
There is an understandably under-serviced market for entomophagists in Europe, and despite a global economic slowdown, this is one industry that will be ramping up production in the future.
We applaud the EU for finally making the leap, as it makes a lot of sense given today’s uncertain socio-economic climate.
For one, insects are widely available, rich in highly bioavailable protein, and are pretty much ‘extinct-proof’.
Second, the production of insect-based food products requires a fraction of the energy and resources required for traditional meat-based sources and produces a relatively small carbon footprint. For instance, enteric fermentation, which accounts for 2.5% of emissions in the US, is not even a byproduct for insects.
Third, most Europeans already eat insects anyways. Countless insects are killed and harvested with soy, corn, wheat, rice, fruits, etc. that subsequently finds its way onto grocery store shelves for consumption by European citizens.
Insects are healthy, sustainable, and we eat them anyways. Thank you for joining us in the future, Europe, but what took you so long?