Italy Bans Insect Flour in Pasta, Pizza – ‘We Will Not Eat the Bugs’

The Italian government announced Thursday that it would implement new regulations to prohibit the use of insect powder in their nation’s cuisine, in a move intended to squash the World Economic Forum agenda. Despite EU regulators approving cricket flour as an “alternative protein source” in 2021, Italians are overwhelmingly rejecting the new bug-based diet. The country reportedly plans to ban bugs in pasta and pizza and will heavily segregate other insect products on supermarket shelves.

“It’s fundamental that these flours are not confused with food made in Italy,” Italian agriculture minister Francesco Lollobrigida said regarding the rule change.

It’s fundamental that these flours are not confused with food made in Italy, Click to Tweet

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Once the new regulations go into effect, all food products in Italy containing the EU-approved bug dust will need to be clearly labeled with the total percentage of ingredients it makes up and will have to be stocked separately from normal food in the supermarket. The new rules are expected to enter effect in June.

“What the decrees provide for is a label with the origin of the product, the risks associated with consumption and the quantity of insect meal present, but we have also provided special shelves where they can be displayed inside the shops. Those who want to choose crickets, larvae and locusts can go there and those who don’t want to, as I imagine most Italians, can keep away.”

The agriculture minister added,

“People can eat whatever they like. For cricket flour, migratory locust, mealworm and larva gialla, we think we need labeling that specifies in a timely and visible way which products are derived from these insects.”

According to The Times, however, the Italian government’s new regulations will also prohibit the use of cricket flour in pizza and pasta dishes. The move comes amid a recent bid by the Italian government to have its nation’s cuisine recognized by UNESCO as part of the “intangible cultural heritage of humanity”– a cultural tradition that many Italians say does not include the use of cricket flour.

In a series of statements earlier this year, Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini argued against mounting efforts by the EU and World Economic Forum to normalize insect consumption, referring to it as a “madness” that would “impoverish” Italy’s culinary culture. Salvini defended his nation’s chefs as “defenders of a way of life based on health, beauty and wealth” and vowed to fight against the proposals.

While Italy’s rejection of cricket pasta and mealworm pizza crust has earned them the ire of climate activists and EU regulators, others worldwide applaud the decision.

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Bloomberg report on the new Italian regulations noted a growing refusal among European countries to indulge in bug-based diets. Lawmakers in France and the United Kingdom have openly bashed the idea in their countries, while it has reportedly become an “increasingly hot topic” in the Polish presidential election.

“We are about to have mass produced insects put into our food,” Brexit champion Nigel Farage said about the changing EU regulations. “The European Commission has approved it. I don’t want locusts for my breakfast!”

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