BUTCHER Dicksons has created a new range of sausages using seaweed to offer a healthier option to customers.
The North East firm, which has branches across Sunderland, is a firm favourite with Wearsiders for its pies, sausages and saveloys.
Now the firm has become one of the first companies in the UK to sell a unique flavour after it teamed up with the Seaweed Health Foundation to mark British Sausage Week 2014.
Finely ground seaweed has been added to the company’s traditional pork sausage mix at its South Shields factory, and this means there’s a 50 per cent reduction in salt – making them a healthier option.
Dr Craig Rose, executive of the Seaweed Health Foundation, said: “Seaweed has been recognised as a positive food ingredient for the future because of the quite astounding range of nutritional benefits it offers.
“Seaweed contains all the required vitamin groups and minerals, and can be used as a natural flavour enhancer to replace salt in the food manufacturing process. Even a tiny amount of seaweed packs a strong nutritional punch.
“We could all learn a great deal from the Japanese and their love of seaweed, as independent research has suggested it can help with weight management and, due to its natural iodine levels, can contribute to normal cognitive function and metabolism.
“It really is a wonder product and we’re excited to be working with Dicksons to advise on how seaweed can help enhance their product offering for customers in a forward-thinking and dynamic way.”
Although the new creation tastes – and looks – like a normal Dicksons pork sausage, the flavour enhancing properties of seaweed brings out the natural taste of the meat, reducing the need for salt in the seasoning process.
Elena Dickson, marketing manager at Dicksons, said: “We’re always looking at ways to improve our product range and establish new flavours and combinations which keep our offering fresh and appealing to our customers.
“The seaweed sausage is the result of 12 months of research and development by our team to find ways to, not only reduce the salt level in our everyday pork sausages without compromising on the Dicksons flavour, but to also experiment with new ingredients which can offer wider nutritional benefits.
“With 50 per cent less salt, the seaweed pork sausage is a great alternative to traditional sausages for children or adults who enjoy a pork treat full of meaty flavour.
“Seaweed is most definitely a food of the future, and we are excited to hear what the feedback is from our customers when the new seaweed pork sausage arrives in Dicksons stores throughout the region.”
The seaweed sausages will be priced at £2 per pack throughout British Sausage Week.