In Europe, uncommon foodstuff (UFS, i.e., traditional foods from specific European regions and uncommon ethnic foods from non-EU countries) have been contributing to a diversification of the food supply. E-commerce and specialized retail shops are the main sources for UFS. This article discusses the legal bases for UFS introduction and evaluation. By means of 35 representative UFS, this article analyses the possibilities of trade and veterinary inspection of these products in Germany, comparing European Union and national food legislation with the many idiosyncrasies the UFS presents. Conservatory legislation bans the trade with endangered species (primates, cetaceans, songbirds), but for many other species, this is a complex matter that may ban only subpopulations from trade. Although introduction of legal UFS is regulated (yet complicated), the lack of appropriate definitions, intra-European trade harmonization, and of sufficient scientific knowledge hampers a satisfactory evaluation of many UFSs, for example, reptile meat or terrestrial insects. In these cases, official inspection would only be very basic.

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