The European Union is funding a project entitled PROteINSECT to investigate the efficacy and safety in using insect protein as a source of animal feed. The project will also investigate the potential for using insects for human consumption. Currently insect protein is only allowed in shellfish feed within the EU and forbidden for other animal feed or for human consumption.
The UK Food and Environment Research Agency (FERA) is leading the project and the ambition is that the European Commission will relax rules to allow the inclusion of insects in poultry and pig feed from 2015. PROteINSECT will draw on the expertise of organisations in China and Africa, where there is already a tradition for using insects in food and feed. It is believed that the insects can be fed by organic waste, which could lead to a 60% reduction of vegetables and domestic waste.