Natural Hog Casings are produced from the small intestine of the Pig and are always referred to as ‘Hog’ rather than ‘Pig’ casings and are sometimes called Hog Runners. They are cleaned , graded, and cured in salt . They have a range from 28mm upto large 46mm wide. The most commonly used casing is the Runner , but the Chitterling, the Bung and the Fatend are also used for speciality products.
As you can see from the illustration (click once to enlarge) the runner is coiled inside the pig and this gives the casing it’s natural curve, and there are approx. 20 yards of casing before processing. Once the runners have been cleaned they are flushed with water and graded and cut according to their width and then measured up into bundles before being cured in salt. The casings are normally graded 28/30mm, 30/32, 34/36 and 38/40 and 40/+.
Natural Hog Casings are used in the UK for most ‘thick’ Butchers fresh sausage including Cumberland Rings, Lincolnshire, BBQ and Boerewors , and are used in vast quantities and in all sizes on the continent and in Germany in particular for Bratwursts and Frankfurters , in Spain for Chorizo , and in Eastern Europe for Kielbasa and smoked sausages. The list is huge! They are more ‘robust’ than Sheep Casings and are often used by beginners as they are easy to handle and link. Filled nicely they will give the fresh sausage a good ‘bloom’ and being a natural product they expand and contract with the meat. Being a strong casing they are ideal for hanging, boiling , steaming , grilling , smoking and the BBQ . A typical 34/36 casing will fill approx. 1lb of sausage per yard. Hog Casings are sold in bundles either dry salted , or in brine , and are now available ready spooled. All our Hog Casings are of British origin and are available either in small packs of 40mtrs or butcher packs of 80mtrs.
The Chitterling , Bung and Fatends are all more specialized casings widely used in Europe but not commonly used in the UK , though this is changing with the increased interest in Charcuterie type products. The Chitterling ,or Hog Middle, is sold in pieces of approx. 1mtr and is used for types of dried French Saucisson, Liver Sausage and Italian Salami Frisses. The Hog Bung or Fatend are sold individually and are used in huge quantities in Germany and Eastern Europe for Liver Sausage and Branschweiger.