Following a year of successful trials Plater Bio is now manufacturing a natural ingredient that could revolutionise the real ale industry! The product is called chitosan and is extracted from specially cultured fungi.

This radical development makes Plater Bio the only manufacturer of fungal chitosan outside of China. It is hoped that the new material will be taken up by the industry as a replacement for isinglass (AKA ‘fish guts’) as it is more effective and is suitable for vegan and organic uses.

Dr Russell Sharp, Plater Bio Technical Director stated, “At Plater Bio we are very excited about the benefits of this revolutionary product. Initial trials have shown that fungal chitosan is a far more powerful flocculant than crab chitosan for clarifying real ale. We have worked with unclarified samples of beer from Pot Belly Brewery in Kettering and the results have been excellent.”

Unlike the vast majority of chitosan which is imported from Asia Plater Bio’s chitosan is not made from prawn heads and crab shells. This makes the new material suitable for applications where animal waste is prohibited or where ingredients need to be vegan/halal/kosher. Plater Bio’s Fungal Chitosan is also REACH regulation exempt as it is a natural polysaccharide.

This substance’s additional uses include removing humates and other contaminants in water treatment and protecting crops from fungi and bacterial diseases. In fact, the product was initially developed as an agricultural biostimulant and only later was its flocculant activity discovered by the Plater Bio Research and Development team.

About Plater Bio

Plater Bio was established in 2016 to commercialize a range of novel and cutting-edge natural products. It is a division of the Plater Group of companies, who are an independent chemical company based in Glossop and Burton.