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Education Courses Insects as food and feed

Insects as food and feed

optional C
Method of evaluation
semi-final examination
Year in the curriculum
Semester in the curriculum
veterinary (English)
Allow for
  • Vet HU
  • Vet EN
  • Biology BSc

Course description

Insects as a sustainable protein source have a growing importance as protein requirement of the word is increasing. Insects and their derived products – excluding live insects – that are intended to be used in animal feed are considered as animal by-products and allowed for use only in the feed of aquatic and pet animals. According to the recommendation of the European Food Safety Authorities, the following species are eligible for farming purposes (EU Regulation No 2017/893): black soldier fly, common housefly, yellow mealworm, lesser mealworm, house cricket, banded cricket, and field cricket. It should be noted that the fed ban does not apply to whole live insects nor to insect-derived fats.

Insects seem to have several positive health effects, such as the antibacterial proteins, which have an enhancing effect on the immune system. The chitin and lauric acid content – which is very high in black solder fly larvae – have positive effects on the gut microbes by reducing the presence of potentially pathogenic bacteria and increasing the beneficial ones.  Whole insects, their preparations, and other derived products are qualified as ‘novel food’ under EU Regulation 2015/2283, which has become applicable on 1 January 2018.


Lecturer: Nikoletta Hetényi, DVM, PhD


Minimal previous course requirements: not required

Lectures theme

Week 1: Environmental impacts of insect production. Culture and history of entomophagy. The role of insects as food, product development and promotion. How to convince consumers.
Week 2: Special dietary effects of insect consumption. Prebiotic effect, antibacterial proteins and fatty acids. Insect farming in the EU. Nutritive value of insects.
Week 3: EU regulatory framework. Food and feed safety.
Week 4: Insects as feed for poultry and fish.
Week 5: Insects as feed for swine, pet animals and ruminants.

Evaluation description

The possible maximum: 30 scores.
 0-15 scores: 1 (failure)
16-19 scores: 2 (passing)
20-23 scores: 3 (fair)
24-26 scores: 4 (good)
27-30 scores: 5 (very good)

Exam information

Written examination.