Legislation for the Use of Insects as Food and Feed in the South African Context

  • Saliou NiassyEmail author
  • Sunday Ekesi
  • Sheryl L. Hendriks
  • Anjanette Haller-Barker


Nearly 50 different species of insects are reportedly consumed in South Africa, making it one of the most significant examples of entomophagy in Africa. While both small and medium enterprises are mushrooming in the country, legislative issues concerning the use of insects as food and feed are often overlooked. This chapter revisits the entire value chain of insects as food and feed and scrutinises the various entry points from a regulatory angle in the light of South African food laws. In South Africa, the regulation of food laws is overseen, for the most part, by four government departments. The Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF), the Department of Health (DoH), and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI). The Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) is also involved for issues such as domestication and transportation of insects and for the promotion of good practices. The government ministries operate under common national acts, although not directly referring specifically to insects. We conclude that the policy environment in South Africa is conducive to the promotion of edible insects. However, the country lacks a national policy framework, preferring to rely on international frameworks (FAO, WHO). The present study calls for a concerted effort among the various stakeholders to deliberate this important question in South Africa.


Insects Production Edible Certification Standards Food Law 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Saliou Niassy
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Sunday Ekesi
    • 1
  • Sheryl L. Hendriks
    • 3
  • Anjanette Haller-Barker
    • 3
  1. 1.International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (icipe)NairobiKenya
  2. 2.Postgraduate School of Agriculture and Rural DevelopmentUniversity of PretoriaHatfield, PretoriaSouth Africa
  3. 3.Institute for Food, Nutrition and Well-beingUniversity of PretoriaHatfield, PretoriaSouth Africa

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