Gelatine & Gelatine Alternatives

What’s the alternative to Gelatine?

Healan are a leading UK supplier of gelatine free alternatives. A big part of Healan Ingredients and our history has been in the product knowledge and supply of gelatine ingredients for various industries across the globe. This will always be a focus for our business, and we continue to provide support and industry advice on our range of gelatine products to our customers.

Gelatine Products:

  • Bovine
  • Porcine
  • Fish
  • Chicken
  • Cold Water Soluble

But as the food industry continues to cater for plant-based, vegetarian, vegan and other clean label demands, our product portfolio has continued to grow and includes premium gelatine-free alternatives. Natural hydrocolloid ingredients are suitable for a large range of applications and functions, some of which are explained below. We work with our customers on improving key texture characteristics without compromising consumer appeal, our vegetarian and vegan offerings are no different.

Consumers are not only following specific lifestyles and diets, but they are also more aware of sustainability and natural ingredients. With our large range of functional ingredients only accounting for small amounts in a recipe (typically 0.2-1.2%) we offer low MOQ’s, guidance on which ingredients would be best suited to your product’s functionality needs and the ability to blend ingredients for bespoke functions.

Switching to gelatine-free alternative ingredients doesn’t have to be a daunting concept. Working together we can achieve the same benefits that gelatine products would but cater to the wider and more mainstream plant-based consumer. Did you know that Healan are also one of the leading pet food gelatine suppliers?

Key benefits:

  • Hot and cold soluble options
  • Meet specific process needs
  • Meet specific product needs
  • Stabilisation
  • Emulsification
  • Thickening
  • Gelling
  • Standardisation
  • Thermoreversible options
  • Heat stable options
  • Aiding back of pack claims

Need to transform your products into plant-based alternatives? Contact our NPD team to discuss your requirements and start the collaborative approach to catering for your consumers’ needs.

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All about Gelatine

Think you know everything there is to know about gelatine? Or don’t know a lot about the multi-functional ingredient?

Our 40 years’ experience and background knowledge is centred around the gelatine industry. Let’s just say, there isn’t a lot about gelatine that we don’t know!

Gelatine is a multi-talented ingredient and often misunderstood. It brings many qualities and characteristics to the table that are often hard to replace with alternative options.

  • Melt in the mouth texture provided in food products
  • Thermo-reversible
  • Film formation
  • Shine
  • Emulsifies
  • Stabilises
  • Gelling agent
  • Binding agent

Gelatine is a key protein; it is non-allergenic, cholesterol free, purine-free and fat-free. It also has no e-number and is a key ingredient for achieving clean label. Having gelatine as an ingredient aids protein claims on back of pack, is suitable for fat reduced products and is also effective for sugar reduction.  

Update from our CEO Maurizio Lapi

“I’ve been working in the gelatine industry for over 40 years, and whilst we see a shift in focus to gelatine alternatives, there will always be a need for gelatine and it’s achievable characteristics in food products. Take the classic cereal bar for example, the addition of gelatine can aid foam formation, adhesion, and textural improvements. Pair that with the health benefits such as aiding muscle-build up, carbohydrate reduction and weight reduction; it’s an incredibly versatile ingredient.”

What we offer

We supply bovine, chicken, porcine, fish and collagen (hydrolysed) forms of gelatine. But it’s never just a simple transaction of goods when you work with us, there’s a lot more we can do when it comes to our gelatine ingredients:

  • Various bloom strengths to meet your specific product requirements
  • Various mesh profiles to suit process requirements
  • Bulk pack options
  • Low MOQ
  • Onsite grinding and mixing giving us the ability to create bespoke gelatine options for your precise product and process requirements
  • Options to blend gelatine with hydrocolloids such as guar gum to aid water binding and increase adhesiveness to products such as meats

Once a Luxury Item

According to Reinhard Schrieber Herbert Gareis’s handbook of gelatine, it was once an ingredient fit for Kings! For centuries, gelatine was a luxury item; it was used to prepare an extravagant jelly for dishes presented at court and in aristocratic villas. It was only in the late 17th century that scientists started propagating its nutritional and physiological qualities. In 1682 the French mathematician Denis, Papin invented a pressure cooking pot called a ‘‘digester’’ that made it possible to cook bones until soft. Papin recommended using the stock produced for preparing soups; he even suggested to King Charles II of England in 1681 that ‘‘the jelly produced from bone be used as a general foodstuff for the people.’’

The opportunities are endless

Although it’s most known as a food ingredient; think jelly, marshmallows, pork pies and meat products; it’s also used in concrete, bird seed products, collagen face creams and much more!

Please find below a breakdown of our gelatine variants and their key applications.

Bovine Gelatine

  • Clarifying agent in fruit juices
  • Various gel strengths, vast range of blooms available
  • Clear varieties
  • Beef product suitable

Chicken Gelatine

  • Chicken product suitable
  • Clear
  • Provides clarity
  • High bloom

Porcine Gelatine

  • Use in jellied meats
  • Use in marshmallows
  • Pork product suitable
  • Vast bloom range
  • Gives clarity
  • Aerating ability
  • Foam stabilisation

Fish Gelatine

  • Fish product suitable
  • Low or medium bloom
  • Slow set option to meet manufacture/process requirements



Collagen – Hydrolysed

  • Bones, hair, nail benefits
  • Perfect for hair care products and collagen drink products in a ‘just add water’ format
  • Different grades of collagen, different dispersibilities and functions within products
  • Clear when dissolved


Need more detail and assistance on using this versatile ingredient? Contact our NPD team to discuss your requirements and start the collaborative approach to catering for your consumers’ needs.

A Guar Gum Alternative to Locust Bean Gum

A deeper look at our New HISTAB 0802 Guar Gum and its achievable characteristics in the replacement of Locust Bean Gum

When it comes to Locust Bean Gum and Guar Gum, we know a thing or two about the applications and key benefits. With current challenges in the supply, costs and regulations surrounding Locust Bean Gum, we would recommend our HISTAB 0802 Premium Guar Gum Powder as an alternative. We understand the key strengths and applications of Locust Bean Gum, and our new HISTAB 0802 has equally great properties including stabilisation and suspending ability. With a lower cost and similar usage quantities to LBG, HISTAB 0802 is, in our opinion, the best alternative on the market.

HISTAB 0802 is reactive with Carrageenan to form flexible gels, and has good suspension properties when used in combination with Xanthan Gum. It is suitable for various applications including meat products (ham injections), sauces (mayonnaise), fruit products (fruit prep for yoghurts), dairy products (cream cheese) and drinks (yoghurt drinks), and desserts (spoonable desserts). It is a high performing ingredient suitable for food, beverages, and pet food.

Katie, NPD at Healan Ingredients explains in more detail.

“When HISTAB 0802 is used in application, viscosity builds late during the heating process so therefore is suited to various production processes including depositing. HISTAB 0802 does require a heat step to achieve the functionality in the finished product, however, it gives better retention of fruit pieces in fruit preparations when compared to LBG and creates a creamy mouthfeel so is perfect for dairy products. It is also perfect for cakes and pastries; crumb texture can be specified and easily achieved with a viscosity increase of batters and doughs during the baking process. HISTAB 0802 has a neutral flavour, therefore not altering your finished product organoleptic properties in the swap from LBG.”

Gelling Ability and Characteristics

Similarly to LBG, HISTAB 0802 is effective in strengthening the gel network of agar and carrageenan, adding elasticity and improving mouthfeel. The addition of HISTAB 0802 reduces syneresis, and in products including mayonnaise and salad dressings, the gels form after the heating stage to give required mouthfeel and stability through shelf life. These properties can be achieved at low doses of only 0.35%, keeping costs minimal.

Suspension Properties

To achieve the same suspension properties as LBG in application, HISTAB 0802 can be used at around 0.2% to give a stable and consistent suspension throughout shelf life. The addition of HISTAB 0802 to your products adds viscosity and mouthfeel along with stabilisation and emulsification.

Need more detail and assistance on using this functional ingredient? Contact our NPD  team to discuss your requirements and start the collaborative approach to catering for your consumers’ needs.

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