Are you looking forward to the grasshopper season this November? Do you enjoy eating these insects as much as many Ugandans do?

Well, the latest news is that the Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) is planning to formulate regulations to govern trading in edible insects such as grasshoppers famously known as “nsenene”

A man in Mbarara pours nsenene into a plastic bag

The Standards body UNBS is said to be in the process of drafting standards for edible insects on the food market in Uganda.

One of the proposals by UNBS is to have the traders dealing in edible insects to have a Certificate of authorisation from the Standards body.

The traders will also be required to properly package the edible insects and indicate on the packing the ingredients, expiry date, country of origin and manufacturers among others.

UNBS argues that this move is intended to foster quality and value addition to the edible insects’ foods industry and to protect against cases of food poisoning resulting in diseases such as cholera.

Raw nesene and fried nsenene

Speaking to traders in Kampala, they have expressed worry and concern over UNBS’ move citing it as yet another excuse by government to collect taxes especially from the informal sector which is mostly involved in the trading in “nsenene”

Grasshopper traders argue that there is no way they can be able to meet the requirements that UNBS proposes to put in place since they deal in seasonal live insects which fall by themselves and therefore impossible for them to determine things like place of origins, ingredients and so on.

We wait to see how UNBS will implement these proposed regulations on the “nsenene” delicacy.

 

 

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