July 1: A milestone for insect protein

03-07-2017 | |
July 1: A milestone for insect protein. Photo: Shutterstock
July 1: A milestone for insect protein. Photo: Shutterstock

As of July 1 2017, insect protein will be allowed to be used in aquafeed. The insect sector is thrilled that this milestone to start using insect protein is now official.

The EU Regulation 2017/893 now permits the use of insect proteins as fish feed, derived from the following insect species:

• Black Soldier Fly (Hermetia illucens) and Common Housefly (Musca domestica)

• Yellow Mealworm (Tenebrio molitor) and Lesser Mealworm (Alphitobius diaperinus)

• House cricket (Acheta domesticus), Banded cricket (Gryllodes sigillatus) and Field Cricket (Gryllus assimilis).

The use of insect protein for other livestock species is not allowed yet.

In the wake of this legislative reform, IPIFF President Antoine Hubert reacted: “We are particularly pleased with the opening of this legislation, which constitutes a major milestone towards the development of the European insect production sector”.

“We also trust that this legislation will bring new opportunities for the European aquaculture sector, as insects should represent a promising source of proteins for farmed fish in the near future: as being a natural component of the diets of carnivorous fish, whilst combining high proteins levels – between 55% and 75% – and excellent digestibility performances, insects are well suited to complement feed formula for aquaculture animals” explained Mr Hubert.

The unlocking of this EU legislation comes after EU Member States voted a proposal presented by the European Commission in December last year.‘This decision contributed to bring sufficient visibility for insect producers to deploy their production activities at wider industrial scale’, explained the IPIFF Vice Chair, Tarique Arsiwalla: “Many companies are now planning their investments in order to increase production volumes significantly. As result, we expect first commercial sales to occur this year already” added Mr Arsiwalla.

Plead for other animal species

Looking ahead, IPIFF expressed the willingness to pursue its efforts towards widening the possible use of insect proteins by EU livestock and aquaculture farmers: “Our association pleads for extending the use of insect proteins in feed for pigs and poultry. We are also interested in exploring potential alternative substrates for insect farming in the future” stated Mr Hubert.

In the meantime, IPIFF and its members are engaged in the development of a guidance paper documenting best practice in quality and hygienic insect production as a means to assist producers in implementing the newly adopted legislation, concluded the IPIFF Chair.

Source: IPIFF

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Emmy Koeleman Freelance editor