Operations: The Worthington Product Line
Enzymes are still the major product of Worthington. Technically speaking, Worthington does not actually make enzymes: we extract them from various animal and plant tissues and various microbial sources such as bacteria, fungi, and molds. A starting material for a particular enzyme is selected according to the prevalence of that enzyme in the material. For example an enzyme whose function involves making muscles work is going to be found primarily in muscle tissue, so the starting material may be rabbit muscle or perhaps pig heart; an enzyme involved in fermentation can best be found in a yeast. Some of the animal tissues used at Worthington include beef pancreas, hog kidney, cow eyes, horse liver, rabbit muscle, beef liver, pig heart, horse blood, and calf intestine. Various proteins are also extracted from horseradish roots, sweet potatoes, almonds, and pokeweed. Some products are isolated from the bacteria E. coli, several species of Clostridia, and various other bacteria. Yeast, mushrooms, whole milk, and eggs are also used.
The most important feature of each of our products is that it functions just as it would in the living cells from which it was extracted. The size and complexity of protein molecules make this difficult, and Worthington's ability to consistently produce enzymes and other proteins in their natural condition is the key to the company's continuing success.