02/2021, Current R&D projects

Development of a flexible vegetable protein to produce vegan sausage casing


  • Funding programme: F&E-Richtlinie des Landes Sachsen-Anhalt, industrielle Forschung (Investitionsbank Sachsen-Anhalt) 
  • Project term: 2020-09-23 to 2022-04-30


Initial situation:

Worldwide vegan and vegetarian diets and eating habits are on the rise. Especially in western industrial nations the demand for meatless food products is very much increasing. According to the German Vegetarian Union, registered society (Vegetarierbund Deutschland e. V.) approximately 7.8 million people are following a vegetarian and 0.9 million a vegan diet in this country. This corresponds to 11 % of the German population. In view of the sustained demand, the product range of artificial meet products is growing accordingly. [1]

Vegan and vegetarian sausages are largely produced with inedible casings, e. g. cellulose-casing, which must be removed after the production process and serve solely as a shaping material. [1]

Contrarily, edible, vegan sausage casings are made of alginates and hydrocolloids (e. g. pectin and xanthan). However, they do not meet the expected quality standards, yet. The use of vegan sausage casings is impaired due to a lack of flexibility (tearing up in the production process) or due to a limited applicability in different types of sausages. Which also has a negative impact on the economic efficiency.


The objective of this project is to develop a high-protein and entirely vegetable casing to produce vegan sausage. Therefore high-methionine protein-agglomerates are extracted from plant-based raw materials (extraction, purification, modification). Thereof sausage casings are produced, and its quality and suitability are going to be tested.

Vegetable flexible protein-films enable the production of vegan sausage casings. In this way, vegan sausages do not only meet the mechanical, technological-functional and sensory requirements, but they also ensure the biological valence of these products.

Furthermore, besides the artificial meet filling, even milk products (cheese, yoghurt), fruit-, vegetable or sweet creamy preparations can be added into the prospective vegan protein-cases. Thereby a halal- or kosher-certification would be conceivable for this product.


The project is currently in progress.


[1] https://prozesstechnik.industrie.de/food/alginat-statt-cellulose/


This Project is funded by the European Union:

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