21 Bites: Europe’s ‘first’ insect e-shop opens for business

By Katy Askew contact

- Last updated on GMT

Fucibo Co launched 21 Bites, the first European online shop dedicated to the sale of insect-based products, this week. FoodNavigator speaks to founder Davide Rossi to find out more.

Fucibo Co claims that its e-commerce brand, 21 Bites, is the first online shop in Europe that only sells foods made from insects.

Founder Rossi, along with a growing number of advocates, believes that edible insects have the potential to appeal to European consumers. “We followed the evolution of this market in the past years and we're sure it could have a big future also in Europe,”​ he predicted.

Watchwords: Quality, safety, authenticity

The start-up sources “carefully-selected”​ products derived from insect protein and produced by European companies.

The 21 Bites team have tested all items available on its pages. The company’s and its messaging focuses on high quality and safety standards, Rossi explained.

“We bet on quality, safety and innovation. Every product that fits this idea is interesting for us: snacks, pasta, flour, whole dried insects, food supplements and so on.

“We selected what we think are the best suppliers in Europe. To do that we've obviously built a ​relation with them and we've tested their products. We buy their products and resale them to consumers,”​ Rossi elaborated.

“We're working to place a top-quality line of products 100% made in Italy on the market soon,”​ he added.

E-commerce the ‘prefect’ channel

The company launched its web portal on Tuesday (26 September). Initially, 21 Bites is rolling out a selection of around 20 products that it plans to “increase in the next weeks”​.

21 Bites will be able to access a wide pool of consumers throughout Europe online and Rossi said this is the “perfect”​ channel for 21 Bites.

E-commerce has been an important avenue for manufacturers selling insect-based products. Online retailing opens the door to increased distribution with a lower bar for proof of concept. Most importantly for Rossi, direct-to-consumer sales are on-trend and European consumers are increasingly embracing e-commerce.

“We think that e-commerce is the modern way of commerce and that's perfect for the idea of company we have in mind. It surely works with food products in general,”​ he noted.

The company is currently focused on establishing its presence across Europe. But Rossi does believe that there is an opportunity for international expansion. “We serve the European market, and we'll stay focused on it at the moment. But in the future, we'd like to import and export from and to other continents.”

Progress on regulatory hurdles

Growing interest in edible insects from business and consumers is being supported by an evolving regulatory landscape in the region.

Currently in the EU, edible insect-derived ingredients and various body parts fall under novel food regulations, meaning that they are not authorised for sale as a foodstuff at an EU-wide level.

However, this is all set to change. The European Commission is in the process of introducing a new novel foods regulation that comes into effect at the beginning of next year, which will require all insect-based foods to undergo a pre-market approval process. “This new regulation will pave the way for a simpler, clearer and more efficient authorisation procedure,”​ European regulators claimed.

The European Food Safety Authority is also giving the green-light to insects entering the human food chain. In a recently published a report, EFFSA concluded that when feed used to produce insects meets the requirements for any input into the food chain, there are no microbiological or chemical contamination issues.

Related topics: Business, Proteins

Related news

Show more

Related products

Create your own Veggie Bolognese Sauce

Create your own Veggie Bolognese Sauce

Roquette: Improving well-being by offering the best of nature | 13-Dec-2017 | Data Sheet

Consumers are craving for less meat consumption, driven by:

Environment - prevent methane emissions from cattle,
Health - follow...

30544-Fortitech-HeartPart1-Banner-SmartLead-616x347

Strategic Nutrition for Heart Health-Part II

Fortitech® Premixes by DSM | 19-Oct-2017 | Technical / White Paper

Consumers are increasingly shopping for heart healthy products. Identify nutrients that can help differentiate your products and learn how custom nutrient...

Reaping the rewards of supply chain visibility

Reaping the rewards of supply chain visibility

Dassault Systems Ltd | 05-Sep-2017 | Technical / White Paper

Despite the challenges in food production, sales and demands aren't slowing down. As complexity increases, there's no telling where the next...

Related suppliers

comments

Post your comment

We will not publish your email address on the website

These comments have not been moderated. You are encouraged to participate with comments that are relevant to our news stories. You should not post comments that are abusive, threatening, defamatory, misleading or invasive of privacy. For the full terms and conditions for commenting see clause 7 of our Terms and Conditions ‘Participating in Online Communities’. These terms may be updated from time to time, so please read them before posting a comment. Any comment that violates these terms may be removed in its entirety as we do not edit comments. If you wish to complain about a comment please use the "REPORT ABUSE" button or contact the editors.

Follow us

Featured Events

View more

Products

View more

Webinars