During our recent trip to Holland (more on that later) we rented a car for a day and ventured across the border to visit the last linen twine manufacturer in Germany. After a few missed turnoffs, we arrived late and apologetic at the factory in the town of Versmold.
Once refreshed with coffee and cookies, Mr.Seidelmayer, the fifth generation owner, gave us an informational tour through the facility.
The majority of their production has traditionally been for the Germany meat industry. Because linen is stronger than cotton— each twine can hold between 20 and 70 kilograms of weight (that’s between 44 and 152 pounds!)— heavy linen twine is used to hang whole sides of pork, while unique color combinations of spun twine are used to differentiate between the various types of sausage.
We saw how the natural flax is spun from larger bobbins into smaller spools and balls on decades old machines in a surprisingly beautiful process.
The majority of the flax used by the factory is sourced from European countries, including the Czech Republic, Poland, and Belgium, however European flax is getting harder and harder to find.
In addition to sausage twine—or wurstgarn—the factory also produces a polished linen kitchen twine. We hope to carry both in the shop soon!