As discussed in the previous article, the idea of Leath3R was born thanks to the requests we had from our customers, and thanks to them, day after day, the Leath3R Program is implemented with new features aimed at helping the user to undertake a process of increasingly sustainable change.
The Leath3R program is divided into 4 main areas which are:
- L3t’s Clean the Planet
- L3t’s Green the Planet
- Valu3 chain for the Planet
- T3ch for the Planet
Each of these areas works on very specific procedures that help to have a low environmental impact on the supply chain of the leather processing that goes from the raw material (slaughterhouse of animals) to the finished product in the shop (shoes and bags on the shelves).
We analyze each area in its main points:
1- L3t’s Clean the Planet
Reduce / Reuse / Recycle
Given all the environmental problems that we are experiencing today and that we have been carrying out for many years and having seen the wastes caused by individuals or those of large industries which then naturally reflect on the environment, we decided to work on the leather production process and analyze all the various points and where possible, to be able to bring improvements and consequently have a lower environmental impact than “normal” production.
100% WATER REUSE IN LIMING
A first analysis was made on the use of water from the leather manufacturing process.
In a leather process, a lot of water mixed with various chemical and non-chemical products is used, especially in the first stages of leather processing, ‘’ riviera ‘’, and these waters consequently, once the Riviera process is concluded, are dispersed in the environment as wastewater and it is a huge problem than to dispose it and can create a lot of environmental damage given all the bacteria that can be residual in them.
Precisely for this reason, we worked on the use of organic products in liming procedures that have a low environmental impact and that can guarantee reuse of the same water in subsequent productions.
Thanks to this mechanism, the water used can be reused several times for different productions and, since organic products are present inside it, once its functionality is exhausted it will have a low environmental impact due to the fact that the products used themselves have a low environmental impact.
Another important factor in leather processing is the use of salt.
Salt in leather processing is used for the conservation of raw leather and therefore we can understand its high use in terms of quantity for each individual leather until the production process begins.
Once the leather is ready for the first stages of processing all the salt that covers it is removed and therefore this creates another important problem which is its disposal.
Thanks to the use of European hides in the Leath3R program, it allows us to use rawhides that come directly from refrigerated slaughterhouses, and therefore in the Leath3R program we have eliminated all the salt that would be needed for storage and therefore we have also eliminated its disposal.
100% STARTING FROM RAWHIDE
To have a low environmental impact on the raw material, in the Leath3R program we have decided to use only hides from European slaughterhouses because thanks to this, we are able to have a low impact of CO2 emitted into the environment by the transport of hides themselves.
100% HAIR RECOVERY
Another no less important aspect is the recovery of the fur during the processing of raw hides.
During the phase called “Riviera ”, the hair that is attached to the skin is detached thanks to the various processes and then turns into waste/mud/waste material and is both difficult to treat and involves a cost for disposal.
This procedure in the Leath3R program is not carried out thanks to the recovery of the hair itself which instead of transforming itself into waste material, is sent to the food industry which then transforms it into a feed and other by-products.
2- L3t’s Green the planet
Green is a simple color but it makes us understand clearly where we want to get to this point. Nature.
The transport of the raw material and the finished product causes CO2 emissions which is dispersed in the environment and this is one of the various factors that cause environmental pollution and unfortunately it is difficult to avoid it.
This does not mean, however, that it is not possible to do something to make this CO2 emitted into the environment neutralized.
In this program, we make use of the collaboration with the Treedom company which, thanks to a complex job, can calculate how much CO2 is emitted into the environment from every single shipment, whether it is a simple pack of hides or a much larger quantity that is shipped to Italy or on the other side of the world.
The number obtained allows us to understand what environmental impact each individual shipment has in terms of CO2 emission and therefore how much oxygen must be produced to neutralize it.
Once this is done, the emitted CO2 is neutralized thanks to the planting of trees.
These trees are able to clean the air and therefore neutralize the pollution that every single shipment causes on the environment thanks to the emission of oxygen into the atmosphere.
3- Valu3 chain for the planet
This whole program would not have been possible if we had not found trusted partners who had the same goal of change.
Thanks to the sharing of information between us we understood that the change we wanted to undertake had to have the objective not to exploit the environmental resources but instead, thanks to the technology and the improvement of the manufacturing process, to use processing systems that respect the environment itself.
Precisely for this reason in the Leath3R program, we have decided to use only certified LWG suppliers Gold.
This is due to the fact that thanks to this certification, we knew we were talking to competent companies that have been facing an environmental sustainability program for years and therefore have immense value in terms of authority.
Today everyone is talking about sustainability because it is the trend of the moment but we really need to check what every single company is doing, in reality, to be more sustainable.
In the Leath3R program, we only use suppliers who have had a Sustainable program in place for many years and which is in the company’s DNA.
Analyzing the production process of our partner, we understood that another point where we could work was the consumption of energy used in the production phases. Normally in a production process, fossil energy (carbon) is used for the production of energy.
We immediately managed to improve this aspect thanks to the so-called ‘’Sustainable Program in Place’’ that the supplier has had for many years which led him to build a photovoltaic system a few years ago. It can be understood that therefore, 70 to 100% renewable energy is used in the Leath3R program.
4- T3ch for the Planet
Last but not least of this division of the program is Transparency and Traceability.
Today in the fashion business these two topics are the key to get control of the supply chain and so to understand where every single shoe or handbags are made.
We can see the approval of all this from the great clothing brands that are increasingly seeking to have greater control of their supply chain and therefore traceability of all the materials that make up their collections.
Many of these brands transparently communicate the online information of who their suppliers are and therefore the end consumer can see in a traceable and transparent way all the information of the materials that are produced by their favorite brands.
Each leather produced in the Leath3R program has a high traceability control that goes from the slaughterhouse of origin of the raw leather to the finished leather.
This traceability check is guaranteed by a third party called The ID Factory.
As you can understand, it is not a foregone thing to have all this information from the supply chain and therefore “behind the scenes” has been done hard and careful work by The ID Factory together with our Italian supply chain to be able to have reliable and reliable data on the origin of raw hides in a transparent and traceable way.
Once we had the necessary information from the slaughterhouses, we were able to trace all the various stages of leather processing including all the products contained in them and all this is collected in a simple QR code that is applied to each individual skin.
This service can also be applied for the entire production chain of the simple shoe or bag by tracing all their components from the heel, soles, reinforcement, laces, etc. and therefore we can say that each individual shoe has its own identity card with all the responses to 5W; how it was produced, where it was produced, when it was produced, who produced it and why.
These are some aspects of the Leath3R program and for each of them, there would be much to talk about and much more information to give. In the next articles, we will analyze point by point adding more and more detailed information.
The keywords we want to convey with this article where we are working to improve the environmental impact and achieve an increasingly efficient and effective sustainability model are; Clean, Green, Value & Tech.