by Leslie Eastman at legalinsurrection.com
The E.U. Commission passed the application presented in 2019 by the Cricket One Company. Now, food producers can use the powder in the production of several foods, including pizza and pasta-based products, nuts and oilseeds, snacks and sauces, meat preparations and soups, multigrain bread and rolls, crackers and breadsticks, cereal bars, dry pre-mixes for baked products, biscuits, processed potato products, legume- and vegetable-based dishes, whey powder, maize flour-based snacks, beer-like beverages and chocolate confectionery.
The go-ahead came on the heels of the scientific opinion expressed by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), which verified and approved the safety of the new powder.
EFSA also approved the powder production process, which includes a 24-hours fasting period for the insects before they are frozen, washed, thermally processed, have their oil extracted and, finally, transformed into dried-up powder.
The march of house crickets into European kitchens will not be completed alone. On January 6th, the E.U. Commission also approved the introduction of the frozen, paste, dried and powdered forms of Alphitobius diaperinus larvae, also known as the lesser mealworm, to the consumer food market.
This was one regulation too much for Italy. The nation, known for its fabulous cuisine, has banned use of insect powder in pizza and pasta.
The rules will also force insect-based foods to be distinguished by labeling and segregation.
The growing use in cooking of flour made from crickets, locusts and insect larvae has met fierce opposition in Italy, where the government is to ban its use in pizza and pasta and segregate it on supermarket shelves.
In a sign of fear that insects might be associated with Italian cuisine, three government ministers called a press conference in Rome to announce four decrees aimed at a crackdown. “It’s fundamental that these flours are not confused with food made in Italy,” Francesco Lollobrigida, the agriculture minister, said.
….All four insects are cited in the Italian decrees, which will require any products containing them to be labelled with large lettering and displayed separately from other foods.
“Whoever wants to eat these products can, but those who don’t, and I imagine that will be most Italians, will be able to choose,” Lollobrigida said.
Orazio Schillaci, the health minister, said the legislation would also ban the use of insect flours in “typical” Italian products like pizza and pasta.