EU Green Light Brings Insect Protein into Mainstream But Does Little for Europe’s Waste Crisis


14 Dec 2016 --- IPIFF - the European Umbrella Organization representing the interests of the Insect Production sector for Food and Feed - have welcomed the ‘green light’ given by EU Member States on the authorization of insect proteins as fish feed.

The EU Member States representatives endorsed a European Commission proposal which was discussed in a meeting of the EU Standing Committee on Plants, Animals, Food and Feed (SCoPAFF). The text is expected to be formally adopted during the spring 2017, which means that insect proteins should be effectively authorized for use in fish feed as from 1st July 2017.
Reacting to Member States’ vote, IPIFF President Antoine Hubert said “We are particularly pleased with the move made by EU institutions: the opening of this legislation is in our view a major milestone towards the development of the European insect production sector.”
IPIFF Vice President Tarique Arsiwalla recalled the recent opinion from the European Food Safety Authority’s (EFSA) dated from 8 October 2015, which concluded that insects fed with plant based materials entail no risks if insect producers comply with best hygiene practices. “This is precisely the case of the IPIFF members, who comply with very stringent risk management procedures, in accordance with the EU food and feed safety legislations,” explained Arsiwalla.   
Looking ahead, IPIFF expressed the will to pursue efforts towards a possible authorization of insect proteins to other non-ruminant species (e.g. pig & poultry) or to allow to use other ‘high grade’ materials to feed their insects. ‘We will plead for further relaxation of EU rules, in case safety conditions associated with these new routes have been demonstrated’ explained Hubert.
‘In the long run, these changes should contribute to alleviate European dependency on protein imports, whilst securing a promising source of protein for EU farmers & customers’ concluded the IPIFF Chair.  

Jason Drew, co-founder AgriProtein, released the following statement in response following the proposed amendments to legislation governing farmed insects used in animal feeds.

“Today's move by EU regulators brings insect protein into the mainstream of ingredients permitted in animal feed.  This is a big step forward for the environment and for world food security.”

“Trawling the oceans to produce fishmeal is one of the most destructive activities on the planet.  Replacing fish protein with insect protein in animal diets allows us to dedicate our oceans to production for human consumption alone.”

“But while the new regulations will permit insect protein as a feed in EU aquaculture, the situation hasn’t changed for other farm animals, including poultry and pigs.” 

“Moreover with post-consumer waste still excluded as a rearing material for insects, the move will do little to solve Europe’s waste management crisis.” 

“Insects are a natural source of protein for all mono-gastric animals.  Indeed the EU already permits the use of insect protein in pet food, when the insects have been reared on pre-consumer vegetable waste.”

“We’re calling on regulators to move to the next logical step: give insect protein the green light as a feed for all non-ruminants and give post-consumer waste the green light as an insect-rearing material.”

“Outside the EU, our fly-factories are already making a big dent in the waste-to-landfill problem.  Once our new factory model is rolled out, they will be capable of recycling 250 tons of domestic organic waste per day,” he said.

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