The bulk of the commercial silk produced in the world is mulberry silk that comes from the domesticated silkworm Bombyx mori L. which feeds solely on the leaves of the mulberry (Morus sp.) plant. In addition to the major utilization of mulberry leaves as silkworm feed, it is being used for many other purposes such as animal feed, nutritional and medicinal uses. Mulberry is a powerhouse of nutrients and is an excellent source of protein. Mulberry is rich in protein and also rich in poly-nutrients like anthocyanin, flavonoids, lutein, zea-xanthin, beta-carotene and alpha carotene. The growing mulberry leaves contain 6 – 6.8% crude protein. Vitamin A, B, C and D are also found in mulberry leaves. Especially they are rich in vitamin C. In addition, mulberry leaves contain 4% soluble carbohydrates, 0.6% crude fat and several compounds of calcium, phosphorus, silicon, manganese, magnesium, iron, copper, zinc etc., are found in mulberry leaves. Hence, mulberry leaves satisfy the dietary requirement of human beings and contain all the elements required for the body.
Silkworm and pupae provide a source of human food. Their nutritional values are astonishingly high, containing large quantities of proteins, fats, carbohydrates and vitamins. It appears that silkworm pupae have a high dietary value, much more than fish and other animal proteins and on par with meat from various animal sources. The fleshy larvae, prepupae and pupae of non-mulberry silkworms such as muga, tasar and eri are preferred as food by Garo, Mikir and Khasi tribes of India. They are in high demand in local markets of North-Eastern states. In view of the above the paper highlighted the nutritional significance of mulberry and silkworm as a healthy foodstuff.