Beef casings for natural casings are mainly produced from the rounds (35 yards), the middles (9 yards) and the
beef bungs (2 yards).
The calibre (diameter) of natural beef casings can range from 36 mm to 50 mm for rounds, 45 mm to 65 mm for middles
and 75 mm to 130 mm for beef bungs.
Like hog casings the narrower size tends to be more valuable in beef casings.
Beef casings are not generally graded as a, A/B or C but emphasis is placed upon lack of holes and blemishes as being
of better quality.
Weasands, beef fat ends and beef bladders are also used in the production of some types of sausage.
Beef casings are predominantly used for the production of salami or continental type sausage.
Beef casings are used to make the following types of sausage:
Black pudding, Haggis (traditionally sheep's stomach)
Dry and cooked salami, Veal sausage, Bologna liver sausage
and Polish sausage.
Most sausage made with beef casings have the same characteristic traditional curved shape.
SURGICAL SUTURES / RACKET STRINGS / MUSIC STRINGS
The above products are not made from the actual beef intestine but with what is known as beef serosa which is the
membrane from the inside of the beef intestine (rounds).
As with sheep casings the initial process in manufacturing these strings is to split the beef intestine lengthwise into
The serosa (membrane) is then separated from the actual beef intestine. The serosa whilst very thin in texture is
incredibly strong and flexible.
Beef serosa has proven to be an excellent substitute for the production of sutures, racket strings and music strings
having the same characteristics of strength and flexibility as needed for racket strings and the same degradability
as required for suture use.
The outer membrane of beef intestine had traditionally been used in reducing gold into 1 mm thick
leaves but these days this description is more likely to refer to the product used in the manufacture
of temperature and humidity recorders / controllers.
These goldbeater skins are produced from the membrane from the inside of the bung.
This is cut to give a flat piece of which four pieces are soaked, layered together and placed
on a frame to dry.
The dried membrane (measuring 9 ins x 7 ins) resembles parchment or vellum.
The piece is cut into strips (1 in x 6 ins) and a strip is attached to a spring and measuring
device within a hygrometer.
The goldbeater skin has a very sensitive hygroscopic property which causes it to contract or
expand with any variation in humidity in the atmosphere. These recorders / controllers are placed in areas where
humidity control is of critical importance.