KANSAS CITY, MO. — Last month, members of the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) voted to tentatively approve the use of dried black soldier fly larvae (BSFL) in adult dog food. The ingredient was first introduced as a potential dog food ingredient for review in 2019, according to Sue Hays, executive director of AAFCO.

The tentative approval of BSFL in adult dog food “means that many state control officials will accept the ingredient in adult dog foods and treats for distribution in their respective states,” Hays explained.

She added AAFCO is not currently reviewing BSFL for use in adult cat food formulations.

The ingredient, which has cropped up in various dog treat products and some complete-and-balanced diets in recent years, has been on AAFCO’s radar since 2016, albeit not specifically for use in adult dog foods. Hays reported BSFL for use “in the very first approved species’ diet for salmonids” was first brought to the attention of AAFCO’s Pet Food Committee in 2016.

“BSFL is the only insect product that has successfully gone through the AAFCO ingredient definition process,” Hays clarified.

On Jan. 20 during the first session of AAFCO’s Midyear Meeting, which was held virtually, the Pet Food Committee discussed a new tentative definition proposal for Dried Black Soldier Fly Larvae ingredients for use in salmonid, poultry and swine feed, as well as in adult dog food. The discussion was tabled and revisited later on before being tentatively approved in August.

The following is the definition for Dried Black Soldier Fly Larvae listed in Chapter 6 of AAFCO’s Official Publication:

“T60.117 (C) Dried Black Soldier Fly Larvae is the dried larvae of the Black Soldier Fly, Hermetia illucens, with or without mechanical extraction of part of the oil, that has been raised on feedstock composed exclusively of feed grade materials. The ingredient must be labeled with guarantees for minimum crude protein and minimum crude fat on an as-fed basis. If oil is mechanically extracted, maximum crude fat must also be guaranteed on the ingredient label. The ingredient is dried by artificial means to no more than 10% moisture. It is for use in salmonid, poultry, and swine feed and in adult dog food, as a source of protein and fat consistent with good feeding practices.”

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