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Leather might look good but the tanning process is toxic and uses chrome that is dangerous to the environment. Today, it is possible to create ecological leather and companies such as BMW uses it for the cars’ interior.
A new method has been developed which uses olive leaves to tan leather. The idea of sustainable leather is small leap forward in the right direction. The company wet-green® is ensuring that more products can be produced in a sustainable way and helping to reduce the use of chrome and other toxic substances.
Today, around 80-90 per cent of leather are tanned by using chrome tanning. It is estimated by wet-green® that 40 percent of the world’s leader production could use the method they have developed that uses by-product materials from olive oil production. Only the leaves are used and they amount to around 10 percent of the harvest weight. Many of the leaves are usually simply burned. The yearly olive harvest in Europe is approximately 12,000,000 tons.
The substance that is used in the tanning are actually developed by the olive tree to fight off predators, so this method is in a way perfect – no material is wasted and there is no exploitation of nature. But, there is the leather and the production of leather hurts animals, the environment. Huge amounts of feed, water and pastureland are devoted to raising animals for food and leather.
Making Eco-friendlier leather is good but we need to think of alternatives like the students who used food waste to produce leather. Go here to read more about that approach. After all, we want to continue to see these kinds of imagines in the future in nature and not only in an old book.