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Natural Casings

Healthy and happy community with proper nutrition has ever been the most important concern of the nutrition planners. The animal proteins have the most nutritional value due to amino acid and are necessary for body. In western societies, especially in Europe, along with protein sources such as red meat, white meat, poultry, fish and eggs using intestine in sausage-making industry as natural casing have been considered.

. Sheep intestine has the highest quality among the intestines with lower diameter and used for sausages like Bukverst, Franfurter and port. These intestines have sufficient transparency and strength to be filled, cooked and smoked. Its color depends on the country manufacturer and varies from white to gray but the difference of color has no effect on the quality, strength, suitability and penetration of intestine.

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What is Casings?

Intestines extend from the last part of stomach (pylorus) to the anus, the initial part has narrow passage named small intestine and the last and tangled part named large intestine. The average length of small intestine of a cow is about 40 meters and of sheep is about 25 meters. The average diameter of small intestine in a cow is about 5-6 cm and in smaller ruminants like (sheep and goat) is about 2-3 cm meanwhile, intestine has smaller parts called: Duodenum, Jejunum and Ileum.

The transparent layer under mucous in small ruminants like sheep and goat is the natural coat used in sausages processing industry. It is also used as the source of animal protein after refining and sorting.

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Casing stages of processing

1. Slaughter sheep and remove its stomach innards: at this step, the small intestine s separated from other parts and classified in groups of 5 or 10.
2. Transfer the classified groups to the innards workshops: to soften the intestines, put them into the basin of salty water and enter lukewarm water in them for better evacuation.
3. The narrow head of intestines are passed through the crack of bamboo wood to remove internal wall and innards of intestine and in the next step the thick part of intestines are passed through the bamboo crack to remove the outer wall of intestine then the middle wall of intestine, means the layer under mucous remains which is called “original”.
4. Transfer the original and salted original intestines in groups of 5-10 to the workshops of sorting intestine.
5. Sort out the intestines by expert personnel in the workshops and then after opening, they are delivered to the sorters in pack of 25.

6. The job of sorter person is very specialized, recognizing the body (intestine diameter) and separating intestines based on the body and quality (porosity, hardness and color). The confirmed caliber for the intestine with the quality of grade 1 is from 14-16mm to 28-30mm, for the grade 2 is from 16-18mm to 24-26mm and for grade 3 is from 18-20mm to 22-24mm.
7. All grades of intestines are classified with special measure, 91meter or 100 yards that is called “regiment”.
8. At classification step, each regiment is separated with a special color based on its caliber and grade. For example: the blue color is for a regiment of grade 1 or A with the caliber of 18-20 and the black one with the same regiment for grade 2 or B.
9. Transferring the regiments to a special table to dip them with salt.
10. At the end, the regiments are placed in the barrels in group of 10, the barrels are sealed and so, they are ready to export.

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Consumption of casings

1. Natural casing in sausages processing industry
2. Surgical sutures
3. Shooting equipment with bow and arrow
4. Musical instruments (violin and tar strings)
5. The strings of tennis rackets
6. Handy crafts
7. In some of industrial machines