Since January 2023, house crickets and larvae of the grain mold beetle processed into powder have been added to the list of ingredients for novel insect-based foods.
Meanwhile, in the Netherlands, tests are underway to determine whether the so-called "Limburgse Cricket Balls" could replace the classic bitterballen in the long run.
Following an official review by the European Food Safety Agency (EFSA), novel foods may now contain the powder of the house cricket (Acheta domesticus) and the larvae of the grain mold beetle (Alphitobius diaperinus) - better known as lesser meal worms.
The decision is based on the EU regulation on the Novel Food Regulation (EU) 2015/2283. According to EU law, the list of ingredients of a food product must indicate that it contains insect components. In addition, the German and Latin names of the respective insect species must be indicated, and a note stating that insect protein can possibly trigger allergic reactions must also be included.
Replace the classic "Dutch bitterballen" with a "cricket ball"?
Whether this is possible in the future is the subject of the "TastIn" ("Taste of Insects") project of the "Fieldlabs for Health and Nutrition" in the North Limburg region, NL. Under the direction of the Fontys International Business School, here the University of Maastricht, the HAS Green Academy and the Dutch food producer "De Krekerij" cooperate. Lastly, different age groups, children, young adults and students were asked for their opinion on the taste and acceptance of the insect ball. The aim is to convince consumers of the "Limburgse Cricket meatball" with the right flavor - and thus offer a sustainable alternative to the beef-based bitter ball.
- Official Journal of the European Union 06.01.2023. https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/PDF/?uri=CELEX:32023R0058
- Fontys Research Group Business Innovation. https://www.linkedin.com/posts/lectoraat-business-service-innovation_marketing-consumeracceptance-consumersciences-activity-7029352316004704256-OePp?utm_source=share&utm_medium=member_desktop
- Fieldlabs Noord Limburg, NL. https://fieldlabsnoordlimburg.nl/