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Not Yet Soylent Green, But we Are Swiftly Getting There

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Okay, so I have to say that this grossed me out, and I second-guessed myself writing about it. However, it is news that we need to be concerned about.

The FSA (Food Standards Agency) in the UK will begin conducting an insect protein consultation, with brands being asked to submit applications before December 2023 in order to be available on store shelves. What does this mean, exactly?

What it means is that the FSA has plans to allow edible insects to remain on the market while they go through what is called the Novel Foods authorization process so that the safety of their consumption can continue to be assessed and monitored.

 

The details of this beautiful and enticing plan have been detailed in what is called a public consultation that the UK health authority launched this week. The FSA plans to present any necessary legal changes as soon as possible, depending on the responses they receive.

“Our proposals will help businesses affected by the uncertainty around insects for human consumption since the end of December 2020,” said FSA Policy Director Rebecca Sudworth.

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“When we left the EU, the transitional measures relating to novel foods, including edible insects, were not amended to require businesses to submit applications to Great British regulators.

“Edible insect products will need to pass through the complete authorization process in Great Britain to remain on the market, so we encourage businesses to talk to us about getting their applications in and the support we can provide through the process. 

“We want anyone with an interest in edible insects, particularly trade organizations and food businesses, to have their voice heard through our consultation.” Well, alrighty then.

According to FSA research, consumers in the UK have an increased interest and demand for healthy, sustainable diets, focusing on consuming less red meat, and more than one quarter (26 percent) of UK consumers said that they would be willing to give insects a try to move toward more sustainability amid growing environmental concerns.

“Our sector has been farming insects and developing exciting, innovative new food products in the UK for many years, and the sector only continues to grow,” said Dr. Nick Rousseau.

“Research from our members’ extensive trials and user testing shows that edible insect products, when professionally farmed and manufactured, offer the environmentally concerned consumer nutritious, tasty, and safe food products that can meet a significant proportion of their protein needs. The support of the FSA will make a huge difference to our ability to prove ourselves in the market.”    

When do we start to become concerned here in the United States? Just last week, at the Wisconsin State Fair, along with Gummy Bear-infused bratwurst, a few questionable items were featured that included insects as the main ingredient.

The Exotic Meat Grill served up an “Arctic Bug Blast Slush” that featured raspberry slush topped with whipped cream “and a sprinkling of edible bugs, including a Scorpion,” the listing noted.

“Yes, they are real. Stay Cool, Eat Bugs!” it adds.

 Another vendor called All Things Jerky served up a chocolate-coated apple that’s finished off with edible June bugs, crickets, worms, and ants – all served on a stick. They called it the “Bug Apple.”  How very grossly cute and clever. No thanks.

So, the takeaway for me is that the UK can be solemnly direct and to the point of things, we in the good ole US of A like to dress up our deception and give it a trial run at a state fair. Consider this while taking a look at the worldwide food shortages taking place. There is a global agenda at play here, folks, and serving up desserts garnished with bugs is just the tip of the iceberg of what’s to come.  Remember Soylent Green, folks? My fear is, that we are not long for it to happen.  And wasn’t it the New York Times that ran a story this week promoting cannibalism?