Gelatin or gelatine?

Which is it?

It just depends where you come from, Gelatin is the American spelling, but here in the UK we put an “e” on the end so it becomes Gelatine,

A mound of Fish gelatin used as an ingredient

Fish Gelatin or Gelatine

So what exactly is Gelatine or Gelatin?

However you choose to spell it Gelatine or Gelatin is a pure natural protein. It is obtained from animal raw materials containing collagen. Gelatine or gelatin is an irreversibly hydrolysed form of collagen. Gelatine is a food ingredient and not a food additive with an E-Number. Gelatine is 84 to 90% protein.

Without protein there would be no human life. Other nutrients, such as fats and carbohydrates, can replace each other in the human metabolism over long periods. But people need protein every day. The natural foodstuff gelatine is therefore of inestimable value to the human organism.

Gelatine does not contain any preservatives or other additives. It is free of fat and cholesterol and causes no common allergies. .

The most common use of gelatine is in food applications, followed by pharmaceutical use, photographic use and technical use. What makes gelatine so unique is the large number of different properties combined in this single product. Those are functions like gelling, thickening, foam building, stabilizing, water binding etc.

What is hydrolysed collagen and is it the same as gelatine?

The raw material for hydrolysed collagen is very much the same as for gelatine. However, the production process and the properties are different.

Hydrolysed collagen is produced by an enzymatic hydrolysis of the collagen. Due to the lower molecular weight caused by shorter peptide chains hydrolysed collagen shows no gelling power but a number of health and beauty related properties instead.

Hydrolysed collagen is type 1 hydrolysed collagen, the same as that found in human bones and skin. It is a natural product containing 97 % protein (on a dry weight basis). It does not have any gelling strength. It is especially soluble, even in cold liquids and has good organoleptic properties. It plays an important role in functional foods and dietary supplements e.g. for bone and joint health or beauty maintenance. As a pure protein it also used in weight management products such as nutritional bars or diet products.

Further information on gelatine can be found at www.gelatine.org which is the Gelatine manufactures of Europe website, or if you are in North America  then you can go to The Gelatin Manufacturers Institute of America’s web site  www.gelatin-gmia.com.