Mealworms the first insect to be approved in Europe as a human food
Part of: GS Prelims and GS-III – Ecology; Biodiversity
- Mealworm has become the first insect to be approved in Europe as a human food.
- The decision by the European Food Safety Agency (EFSA) paves the way for mealworms to be used whole and dried in curries and other recipes and as a flour to make biscuits, pasta and bread.
- Rich in protein, fat and fibre, they are likely to be the first of many insects to feature on European’s plates in the coming years.
Important value additions
- Mealworms are the larval form of the mealworm beetle, Tenebrio molitor, a species of darkling beetle.
- Despite their name, mealworms are beetle larvae rather than worms.
- They also go through four life stages: egg, larva, pupa, and adult like all holometabolic insects.