Actual "bug food additives" have been used "regularly and purposefully" for centuries by both primitive societies and modern-day man. Even in this day and age where almost everything can be produced in a laboratory, creepy-crawly critters are still part of our common foods, although we would rather forget all about their presence in our food supply.
The following segment below explains how the bugs are in the most common food products.
Let's start with the most common "bug food additive": The Carmine (aka carminic acid, cochineal, Carmine 40, E120, Crimson Lake, Natural Red 4 and CI75470). This red, pink or purple dye color additive is mainly carminic acid extract obtained from the crushed South American female beetle bug Dactylopius coccus. These insects have been the main source of the red dye carmine for centuries. Of course, cochineal extract isn’t vegan — nor is it kosher. Carmine is listed on "ingredients list' of food products as a natural product. Carmine is exempt from certification, yet it is FDA approved as safe to consume. It is used in strawberry yogurt, pink grapefruit juice, candies, in frozen dinners and even in products like shampoo and clothing dye.
Another common bug-related food is actually "made" by bugs: The Confectioner’s glaze (aka shellac, candy glaze, pharmaceutical glaze, “glazing agent” and E904). This food-grade glaze/shellac is secreted by the Indian tropical forest female lac bug (Kerria lacca) to make tunnel-like resin structures along the branches of trees. The resin is scraped, melted down and filtered, dried and broken into flakes. The glaze is used in food items to make them look glossy, plus gives them a protective coating. The Confectioner’s glaze is undeniably everywhere — Mints, Whoppers, Jelly Bellies, gumballs, shiny apples, Chex Mix, etc. Yet, it is not used just in food industry. It is used to refinish wood floors and in cosmetics.
Then there is the wax, honey and royal jelly made by the bees. Honey has long been a common food product, and beeswax is used to shine up fresh fruit and candy —in addition to being used in candles and beauty products. Royal jelly, food for the future queens in the hive, is available at health food stores as a nutritional supplement for humans.
FDA's Guideline For "Food Defect Action Levels" Permits A Certain Amount Of Insect Fragments In The Common Food Products!
The Scientific American blog claims that, Americans, unknowingly consume an average of 1-2 pounds of flies, maggots, and other bugs each year.
Actually, the Food Defect Action Levels outlined by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) officially permits a certain amount of insects in food products, arguing that it is close to impossible to filter them all out.
For example, pasta may contain an average of 225 insect fragments or more per 225 grams; a cup of raisins can have 33 fruit fly eggs and still make its way to shelves.
Bugs are constantly present during the food manufacturing process, from the field where the food is grown to the storage and transit of the food to your grocery store. Here are a handful of common food products that secretly contain insects.
By the FDA’s standards, 100 grams of peanut butter in your pantry may contain up to 30 or more insect fragments —including their heads, bodies, and legs— and 1 rodent hair before it is deemed contaminated.
By the FDA’s standards, the chocolate bar may have 60 or more insect fragments per 100 grams. According to a recent study by , cockroach parts are among the most common contaminants found in chocolate.
The FDA legally allows up to 225 insect fragments per 225 grams of pasta before they ban the product from grocery store shelves. Insects usually find their way into pasta through wheat, which can contain up to 75 insect parts per 50 grams (about ¼ cup).
As you sip on that steaming-hot cup of coffee, you might be drinking around 120 insect parts. The FDA approves coffee samples that are less than 10 percent insect-infested. At that rate, the average coffee drinker could unknowingly consume almost 140,000 insect fragments per year, according to Terro.
One cup of raisins may have up to 35 fruit fly eggs and ten whole insects, per FDA guidelines.
If a 3.5-ounce can of mushrooms contains 19 maggots and 74 mites, it is technically FDA-approved.
Aphids are “notorious for infesting” gardens and crop fields. The tiny bugs grow up to 5 millimeters in size and make up about 10 % of the world’s consumed insects. Aphids infest gardens and crop fields that grow produce like broccoli. The FDA allows up to 60 of these creatures per 100 grams of frozen broccoli.