05-May-2021 - Bundesamt für Verbraucherschutz und Lebensmittelsicherheit (BVL)

Yellow mealworm approved as novel food

However, the Federal Office points out possible allergic reactions

The yellow mealworm is the first insect to be approved as a novel food. The EU member states have approved a corresponding proposal by the European Commission. [1]
The European Commission and the Member States consider the novel food safe in principle. "However, consumption of the yellow mealworm can lead to allergic reactions in sensitive individuals," says Dr. Georg Schreiber of the Federal Office of Consumer Protection and Food Safety. The label must therefore bear a reference to possible cross-reactions to allergies to crustaceans or house dust mites.
The dried larva of the flour beetle Tenebrio molitor (mealworm) may be sold whole or ground. It can also be used as an ingredient up to 10 percent in various foods, for example pasta or biscuits.
As the authorisation is based on proprietary scientific data, the authorisation is initially only valid for the applicant French company for a period of five years. After this period, competitors wishing to rely on the authorisation may market the yellow mealworm without the applicant's permission. However, due to a transitional provision, if whole insects were already lawfully marketed as food in the EU before 01/01/2018, they may continue to be marketed as food if an application for authorisation as a novel food was submitted for them before 01/01/2019. For the yellow mealworm, these conditions are met.

[1] Publication of the regulation in the Official Journal of the EU is still pending.

Note: This article has been translated using a computer system without human intervention. LUMITOS offers these automatic translations to present a wider range of current news. Since this article has been translated with automatic translation, it is possible that it contains errors in vocabulary, syntax or grammar. The original article in German can be found here.

Facts, background information, dossiers
  • consumer protection
  • food safety
  • allergies
  • mealworms
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