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Defending Leather

Release date: 9/14/2010

Leather Naturally! initiative discussed at ACLE 2010

Nowadays leather is facing stiff competition from synthetic materials manufactured from non-biodegradable petrochemical derivatives which are designed to imitate it. At the same time it has been subject to attacks from environmental groups such as Greenpeace and outrageous claims made against it by the animal welfare NGO PETA.

The Leather Naturally! Initiative is aimed to counteract these attacks, highlight the natural beauty of leather and more importantly educate the buying public, designers and youth about leather and the leather industry. Youth is particularly important - not only as future consumers but also as the fashion designers of the future.

The initiative was discussed at APLF in March this year and once again at the ACLE event in Shanghai earlier this month. After much debating, the whole industry from meat packers to tanners, manufacturers and retail brands is joining forces and throwing its weight into Leather Naturally! a campaign very much inspired by industry wide operations such as the ones led by the Cotton Council and Woolmark.

It is to the benefit of all operators in the leather supply chain to help defend the leather industry against the negative publicity inspired by special interest groups such as the ones mentioned above. The positive aspects of leather such as it being sustainable material with natural elegance have to be promoted while defending it against unchallenged reports designed to prejudice its image.

“Leather is in a tougher and more competitive environment than it has ever been before. It is time for the industry to challenge its detractors”, claimed leather expert, Mike Redwood at the press launch on the first Wednesday of the ACLE Fair.

emember “synthetic leather” is not “leather” – it is a chemically created petroleum derivatives which, long term, will damage the environment just as plastic does, since it is not biodegradable. LeatherNaturally! represents tanners and associated companies promoting leather as a high quality sustainable material.