Qatar bans food containing insect products

Qatar says insect products do not meet "requirements of technical regulations for halal food".

Doha: Qatar has banned insect products in foodstuffs after the European Union (EU) added two new products to its approved list.

In a statement, the Qatar Ministry of Health said that insect products do not meet “the requirements of the technical regulations for halal food.”

“The regulations of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries and the religious opinion of the competent authorities prohibit eating insects or proteins and supplements extracted from them,” it added.

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Qatar said its move followed “the decision of some countries to approve the use of insects in food production”. 

Though the statement did not mention any names, the announcement came a week after the European Union Commission approved the use of small mealworm larvae and domestic crickets in food.

The European Union’s approval has caused a state of controversy, but what seems strange to many has been a tangible reality for years as these products are widely available in shops.

Why does the world think of eating insects?

The studies conducted by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) indicate some insects have high nutritional value as they contain amounts of fat, protein, vitamins, fiber, and minerals.

Insects have long been a source of protein in societies around the world, but consumption has exploded as pressure mounts to find alternatives to meat and other foods associated with high levels of greenhouse gases.

Eating insects is more sustainable than red meat, according to the World Wildlife Fund.

Several months ago, the FAO published on its official website a topic entitled “Get ready to accept the idea of ​​edible insects,” which spoke about four reasons it justifies eating edible insects and opens up good prospects for food security and livelihoods.

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