Snail meat is highly nutritious, delicious and nourishing for the old and young. But after consuming the snail meat, what do you do to the snail shell?
Well, after reading this article, I bet you won’t throw the snail shells away again!
Snails are very important creatures and a unique characteristic of snails is that they are useful either dead or alive. Snail farming is a very lucrative agribusiness, highly profitable, and is especially easy and fun to practice.
Snail farming requires a low capital and cost of production, it also gives you enough time during the day to go about other activities and still meat your household protein demand.
Snail farming business is also highly profitable as the demand for the snails and its by products is high.
Snails are mollusk, single shelled animals that live on land and in water. Snail meat, snail shell and snail slime are all raw products used by various sectors of the economy. Snail is one creature that is all useful including its by products.
The most common use of the snail shell is as calcium supplement in livestock feeds and also as necklaces in arts and crafts. There is much more!
Snail shells are used in various industries including engineering, medicine and cosmetics. Lets crawl in. LOL
Snails And Snail Shells
Snails are nocturnal animals which mean they are active at night. Snails are also seasonal; abundant in the dry season and almost not to be sighted during the dry season. During this dry period, they produce a whitish thin layer of mucus to cover them and they hide in their shell until the next raining season.
Snails are environmental friendly creatures although they can be pests on a farm. Snails help to answer many questions in biodiversity, serve as indicators when something is wrong in the environment and how life on earth is progressing.
Snails have a spiral shaped house wound around a spindle as their shell. The snail retracts its body into this shell when they sense danger or during extreme weather conditions.
Snail shells serve as protection and houses to the snails when alive and become the waste products after the snails death.
Snail shells depending on the snail specie are beautifully and brightly coloured, stripped or patterned and hard.
Snail shells represent bio-shell waste of snails’ remnants obtained from restaurants, eateries or snail sellers and they constitute a serious degree of environmental threat with little or no economic value.
Studies have shown that snail shells are useful raw materials in the treatment of waste water and also the purification of aqueous solution.
Uses Of Snail Shells
Have you seen a beautiful necklace made from snail shells? Or have you been to the beach and picked up snail shells? Well, I bet you can admire the beauty and creativity in the snail shell. Lets take a look at this beautiful item from other angles and industries.
- Snail shells are used as calcium raw materials in livestock feed. Calcium is important in the building and maintaining of the bones and other enzymes in the body. Snails shells are crushed and mixed with the feed.
- Snail shell is used in construction engineering as they have been found to be suitable reinforcement material in the production of composites which is applicable in the automotive components such as pistons, connecting rods and brake pads.
- When crushed, snail shell can be used as addictive to scouring powder and as cleaning agent.
- Snail shells are used as currencies. Snail shells were used as medium of exchange similar to coin money. The part of the snail shell could be the whole shell or some parts of it. Shell money was common in America, Asia, Africa and Australia.
- Snail shells are used for decorative purposes. Sea snail shells for instance can be painted to serve as a decoration in homes, offices and various places.
- Snail shells have also been used to produce biomaterials and drugs in medicine, Rao et al, (2016). They observed that the Golden Apple Snail Shell are a source of calcium and can be used in the production of naturally based biomaterials.
- In agriculture, the use of chitosan obtained from the mussel shell has been established to improve the yield of rice and orchid production. It was discovered that the mussel shell contained a mineral content of 51.62% and a chitin composition of 21.32%.
- Snail shell contain natural polysaccharides. According to Abdulkarim et al (2013), chitosan has been widely used in vastly diverse fields, ranging from food processing to medicine and biotechnology.
- Snail shells have also been used to treat waste water and purification of aqueous solutions.
- Snail shells are also used as fillers in the paper industry to improve the paper capacity.
- Snail shells have also been used in the cosmetic industries as face powder.
- Snail shell is used in the cosmetics industry in the treatment of skin infections such as acne, wrinkles etc.
- Snail shells are good alloying agents for aluminum based composites used in automobile industries. There is need therefore for continuous and upgraded review on this theme.
- Snail shells are used as fillers in the production of ceramics due to their hardness.
- Snail shell surprisingly is used for spiritual purposes such as for local protection charms.
- Snail shells are used in traditional magic concoctions.
- Snail shells are also used in the food industry such as the Escargot, a French delicacy also served in other parts of the world.
- Snail shells are used in the arts and crafts to decorate surfaces.
- Snail shells art also referred to as shell craft is a branch of arts and crafts using the shells for various forms of arts including shell grottos.
- Snail shells can also be used as calcium supplement in soil treatment for new snail hatchlings by crushing the snail shells and mixing with the treated soil.
Snail shells are great inspiring engineering materials used in science and technology development.
The effective utilization of snail shells can bring about an improved economy both for the snail farmer and interested snail business entrepreneurs.
Researchers have worked with snail shells in so many different ways and have highlighted the uses of snail shells in various capacities.
Further studies are being carried out on other uses of the components of the snail shells.