Singapore Approves Import Of These 16 Insects For Culinary Use

Eating insects might sound absurd to many people around the world, but their consumption is quite common in many countries. It is a tradition in many communities to make certain insect-based delicacies on special occasions. Whether you are among people who have ever eaten insects or not, you will be surprised to know that Singapore has approved the import of insects of at least 16 varieties.

Video Credit: Gordon Ramsay/ YouTube

Food enthusiasts and culinary experts around the world have been experimenting with new ways to incorporate certain harmless insects into their meals. Ahead of this, the Singapore Food Agency (SFA) has shown the green light to import and even farm some of these insects by calling them safe for human consumption.

Singapore Approves Use Of 16 Insects In The Culinary World

In a circular released on July 8, 2024, the Authority of Singapore was quoted saying, “With immediate effect, SFA will allow the import of insects and insect products belonging to species that have been assessed to be of low regulatory concern.”

Reportedly, the body has informed that the production of these insects should be safe, hygienic, and ‘not wild’. The SFA added, “Documentary proof is required that insects are farmed in premises regulated by the Competent Authority.”

Media reports also indicate that this piece of news has left people in the beverage and food industry delighted. They have already begun their search for finding quality produce of insects in Thailand, China, and Vietnam. 

The SFA has instructed the authorities responsible for importing and using these insects to strictly follow the safety guidelines while handling these insects in the kitchen as well as in pre-packaged industries. The packets will come with labels disclosing all kinds of information one needs to know before making the purchase.

Variety Of Insects Approved By Singapore

The list of insects approved by the Singapore authorities includes 16 species,

  1. Banded cricket
  2. Superworm
  3. White grub
  4. House cricket
  5. American dessert locust
  6. Greater wax moth
  7. Western honey bee
  8. Common cricket
  9. African migratory locust
  10. Giant rhino beetle grab
  11. Two-spotted cricket
  12. Grasshopper
  13. Silk moth/ silkworm
  14. Mealworm
  15. Lesser wax moth
  16. Lesser mealworm

It’s not just these countries where people indulge in insect-based savouries. Many communities in India also relish dishes like red ant chutney from Chattisgarh or kai chutney from Odisha. It even received the Geographical Tag (GI). In Northeastern states, insects like giant water bugs, termites, crickets, bees, wasps, dragonflies, locusts, etc. Reports suggest edible insects are rich in vitamins, proteins, amino acids, and carbohydrates.