• Germany's news in English
 

German-Iranian friction boosts Bratwurst prices

Published: 24 Feb 2012 12:31 GMT+01:00

In shock news for Germans everywhere, the sausage industry is feeling the rising cost of importing sheep intestines from Iran, leading Nürnberger Bratwurst producer Claus Steiner told The Local on Friday.

Sheep intestinal lining – a key ingredient in making the sausage – is largely imported from Iran, which has a 500-year history of trading animal by-products. But this may change, as the price of sheep gut has almost tripled in the past 18 months.

A year and a half ago 90 metres of intestinal lining, enough to encase about 1,000 delicious bratwursts, cost just €6.30. But now the same length costs a whopping €17.20 - an alarming price hike that sausage-loving Germans may feel come barbecue season.

“There’s no replacement for a Nürnberger Bratwurst,” said Steiner, owner of the successful self-named butcher's chain.

The Nürnberger is a traditional German delicacy made of finely ground pork, cased in intestinal lining and seasoned with marjoram. By European Union regulations, it can only be called a Nürnberger Bratwurst if it's made in the Nuremberg area – like Parma ham, or champagne.

“I don’t think customers will stop buying them, and we’re not expecting a loss in sales. They will just be a little more expensive,” said Steiner.

He explained that the price increase is not only down to heated political relations between the two countries, but a global decrease in the sale of meat products.

“Sheep intestinal lining is a by-product, not a reason a sheep is slaughtered.” Steiner said. “So if less people are buying meat, less sheep are being killed and less lining is available.”

Though meat trade is decreasing worldwide, Iran has experienced a swell in demand for intestinal lining from China, which until recently had very little demand for animal guts.

With Iranian intestines at a premium, Steiner is looking into importing from other countries such as Egypt, which also exports sausage casing.

“Another option is pig lining, but the taste is just not comparable to sheep,” he said.

Jessica Ware (jessica.ware@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

15:07 February 24, 2012 by anurag_bagaria
If the cost of this raw material has gone up from EUR 6 to EUR 18 for a 1000 piece bratwursts, this means the cost of raw material per piece is still under 2 cents, while earlier it was a little more than half CENT. It's difficult to think that this would actually effect the retail price on sale of individual pieces of Bratwurst.
15:21 February 24, 2012 by finanzdoktor
@anurag_bagaria: Good analysis and viewpoint, but you forgot to add the expected profit return which will also be passed on to the consumer. What, maybe 100% to 200%, or more, times the number of bratwurst the normal consumer purchases,.........begins to add up.
16:03 February 24, 2012 by Civical
Try getting your sheep intestines from Wales, they have lots of sheep. No idea what they use them for at the moment.
16:17 February 24, 2012 by Beachrider
OK, I know that it is Friday and this is now Lent, but that lipsticked person is being quite delicate in the treatment of breakfast.

Just my two cents worth...
16:38 February 24, 2012 by RedLeg6
I'm sure there are plenty of sheep intestines available from Great Britain, Australia, or the U.S. What's the big deal with Iranian ones?
18:21 February 24, 2012 by Englishted
@carlm

Me I don't want Israel wiped of the map ,you sound like the president of Iran yourself with that comment .

Plus :

"I think it's time, long overdue even, for the US to do a Dresden bombing on Afghanistan and get the hell out. There's nothing of value over there. "

From another article .

These two sum up the kind of person you are and I and many in Europe are glad you reside in the U.S.A. and I feel sorry for them there.
18:22 February 24, 2012 by MikeJarosz
Carlm says "President Downgrade here in the US certainly wouldn't lose any sleep if it happened."

But he would lose the election...
19:39 February 24, 2012 by raandy
Beachrider Ya , I agree and kind of came to the same conclusion that this was more than about sausage, not the best way to portray the issue.
19:56 February 24, 2012 by derExDeutsche
@ carlm

Bravo! Well said.
21:02 February 24, 2012 by catjones
It takes guts to switch suppliers.
21:37 February 24, 2012 by carlm
Englishted, thanks for the compliments.
21:48 February 24, 2012 by McM
Wurst posts I have read in along while. You are being weeny bit thin skinned over the issue me thinks.
09:55 February 25, 2012 by Yah right
Carlm's is the poster boy for all the stupid right wing American zealots who are nothing but greedy, self serving righteous b@stards. Intensely angry and bitter, in-your-face provacateurs who are intent upon destroying any semblance of civility that may have existed in the US.

They know it all and believe that they have GOD n their side of any issue. They are scared freaks of nature, too stupid and arrogant to understand how intensely pathetic, yet dangerous they are.

If you want to see what type of corporate mentality exists in carlm's country just go to you tube and find the video about abusive corporate dairy operations in the US. It is disgusting. Yet carlm calls the American way "doing the best you can with what you have.". They believe in destroying the ground water with the practice of fracking
11:38 February 25, 2012 by blackboot11
"Sheep intestinal lining ­ a key ingredient in making the Nürnberger Bratwurst...

a traditional German delicacy..."

well, its not very "authentic German" if the ingredients come from Iran now is it?

Such a ridiculous argument as the basis for this article.... LOL!
15:07 February 25, 2012 by Englishted
@Yah right

That is as maybe but I think he is a knob.
21:00 February 25, 2012 by Elderking
Those intestine casings will be Halal - from animals slaughtered in a mediaeval religious ceremony.

Don't buy them..
14:32 February 26, 2012 by LiberalGuy
@Englishted

Funny. But you are showing your age by calling him a knob. I haven't heard that since high school
20:29 February 27, 2012 by Englishted
@LiberalGuy

But are you sure it means the same thing?

E.G. Fanny does not mean the same in English as in the U.S.A .

So I will clear it up he is a pric# , better?
Today's headlines
Extreme heat causes Autobahn to rupture
A fissure on the Autobahn near Heidelberg. Photo: DPA

Extreme heat causes Autobahn to rupture

The heatwave sweeping across the country may have Germans flocking to the sea this weekend, but the extreme temperatures are also causing Autobahns to break apart. READ  

Nazi island resort to be turned into luxury flats
Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Nazi island resort to be turned into luxury flats

A vast Nazi mega-complex meant as holiday homes for German workers and later used by the Soviets as a Cold War barracks is about to be turned into luxury flats. READ  

Greece crisis
'Bundestag must vote on new bailout': Schäuble
A poster of German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble in Athens reads "For five years he has sucked your blood. Now tell him NO." Photo: DPA

'Bundestag must vote on new bailout': Schäuble

UPDATE: Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble said on Friday that there would be no quick release of bailout funds to Greece after the country's referendum on whether to accept its creditors' terms on Sunday. READ  

Activists give Dalai Lama 80th birthday stamp
The new Deutsche Post stamp showing the Dalai Lama. Photo: DPA

Activists give Dalai Lama 80th birthday stamp

Pro-Tibet activists have created a new limited-edition stamp featuring the Dalai Lama to mark the Tibetan spiritual leader's 80th birthday. READ  

Women's World Cup
'Germany will crack England': top coach
Star striker Celia Sasic. Photo: DPA

'Germany will crack England': top coach

The manager of European champions FFC Frankfurt told The Local he expects Germany to beat England in the third place play-off in the Women's World Cup, and predicted his protege Celia Sasic will grab a goal or two. READ  

NSA surveillance scandal
Calls grow for govt to act on NSA spying
Chancellor Angela Merkel, the highest-profile German victim of NSA spying, speaking on the phone. Photo: DPA

Calls grow for govt to act on NSA spying

Green Party security expert Konstantin von Notz told The Local on Friday that Chancellor Angela Merkel is failing to restore faith in the German-US partnership following fresh spying revelations. READ  

Germany reach semis of beach volleyball worlds
Ilka Semmler and Katrin Holtwick. Photo: DPA file

Germany reach semis of beach volleyball worlds

Germany's top beach volleyball pair are storming the world championships in Holland and prepare to face Brazil in the semis on Friday. READ  

Environment minister blasts Merkel, colleagues
Environment Minister Barbara Hendricks. Photo: DPA

Environment minister blasts Merkel, colleagues

Environment Minister Barbara Hendricks loosed a broadside against her cabinet colleagues on Friday in a guest article for Die Welt, saying that they had decided to do too little to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in a way that would cost too much. READ  

Greece crisis
BILD polls readers in own 'Greece referendum'
Image: BILD/screenshot

BILD polls readers in own 'Greece referendum'

Tabloid Bild continued its campaign against bailouts for Greece on Friday by calling its own "referendum", asking readers to fill out a poll on whether Germany should keep stumping up. German politicians were divided on how the Greek vote would affect Europe. READ  

Police confiscate WW2 tank hidden in cellar
The Panther tank removed from a cellar in Kiel, with a prosecutors' evidence label attached to its barrel. Photo: DPA

Police confiscate WW2 tank hidden in cellar

Police searched a villa in a wealthy suburb of Kiel on Wednesday and found a Second World War tank, a torpedo and other weaponry in the cellar. On Thursday they were still working on removing the tank. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Gallery
Police seize pensioner's WW2 heavy weapons haul
National
How to survive the Europe-wide heatwave
Sport
Is Schweini already out of the door at Bayern?
Politics
How German media shaped the Greece crisis
National
Car assembly robot crushes worker at Volkswagen
Rhineland
Weathermen red-faced over heatwave snow warning
Society
An eye for an eye? Mum protects child in playground with pepperspray
National
As it happened: Queen Elizabeth's final day in Germany
National
As it happened: Queen Elizabeth's second day in Germany
National
Queen Elizabeth II's first day in Germany - as it happened
National
Bus passengers tell fake racists where to get off
Politics
What's really in the Queen's handbag?
National
Germans say USA doesn't respect freedom
National
Yes, you CAN buy adult e-books before 10pm in Germany
VIDEO: Watch a 93-metre turbine crash to earth in slow motion
Gallery
Who's got a shot at the German Film Awards
Rhineland
Anger over 'child-free' beer garden
National
How do you do, Majestät?
National
Man defends right to pee in public with tear gas
Features
The Germans who won Waterloo for the British
Frankfurt
Should Germany ban circus animals?
Hamburg
Where people are having the most sex in Germany
Culture
Who Wants to be a Millionaire? Not this student...
National
Dresden's three-decade-long red light
Politics
Upper house calls for gay marriage now
Berlin
Berlin named 3rd-best city worldwide
Sport
In search of the toughest firefighter
Business & Money
German firms shine for European engineering students
Gallery
Hitler's paintings up for auction
National
German's 70-year search for murdered US pilot
Politics
What the G7 leaders agreed at Elmau
Business & Money
What really makes Germans happy
National
Playmobil builder leaves worldwide legacy
National
The car share that became a drug run
Politics
What Snowden revealed to Germany
Rhineland
Why wolf cubs are being raised by hand
National
Hitler's booze cave found
National
Environment makes Germany worth living in
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

6,945
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd