Snails Get the Spa Treatment

Snail mucin has been having a moment in skin products over the last couple of years thanks to its awesome hydrating benefits. With the uptick in demand for snail mucin though, where are companies getting all of the slime from? Turns out, specialized collection devices have been developed to assist snail farmers in harvesting snail mucin. As just one example, European Application Number EP20160202140 is a patent application to a specialized device for snail mucin production and collection.

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            The device of EP20160202140 has an enclosed chamber with a basket inside, and the snails are placed in the basket and washed. Then, the collection device creates a spa-like environment, referred to as a “sauna”, using a special solution in the chamber (e.g., stimulating solution, sterilized water or ozonated water). The snail sauna, which is not so hot as to harm the snails, triggers the snails to produce slime. The slime is then collected and much of it is sold to beauty companies.

            The best part is that this collection approach has a low impact on the snails. So the snails are collected and sent back to the farm, where they can eat and rest until the next collection. As we see time and time again, unique problems call for unique solutions!