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Progress reported on leather initiatives

Outlining the results of the recent committee meeting on leather production.

The fifth meeting of delegates to the Global Leather Coordinating Committee (GLCC) took place at the Lineapelle show on 9th October. This body is formed from representatives of the International Council of Hide Skin and Leather Traders Associations (ICHSLTA), the International Council of Tanners (ICT), and the International Union of Leather Technologists and Chemists Societies (IULTCS), and invited guests from key organisations with leather industry interests.

The meeting provided an opportunity to review progress on a number of ongoing projects jointly sponsored by the GLCC’s three organisations. The projects include worldwide registration and control of the international leather mark, and the construction of a centralised database of regulations and veterinary health certificates for leather. Also under discussion was the establishment of a leather carbon footprint profile, an EU Commission pilot project for green products, and drafting a list of critical substances in leather.

Labelling under discussion

The ICT is continuing to compile its database of leather labelling standards and regulations by country, which will soon be made available. To date, there are over 60 entries to the database, which also provides standard definitions for the correct labelling of leather products. The GLCC is encouraging the global leather industry to promote the standard definitions for leather labelling in order to protect leather’s image in the marketplace.

Progress was reported to have been made on mapping the registration of the international leather mark in a number of countries. According to the GLCC, work is continuing towards full registration of the mark in all major markets, with the goal of linking it to the correct labelling of leather according to the established ICT definition.

Work on the leather carbon footprint data collection project is also continuing, with a number of tanneries interested in participation. The Confederation of National Associations of Tanners and Dressers of the European Community (COTANCE) has successfully applied for the leather industry to be included in an EU pilot study that seeks to establish a single market for ‘green’ products.

This study will seek to define product category rules and system boundaries that calculate the carbon footprint for leather according to the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) recommended method. This data will be used to establish the carbon footprint profile of the leather industry, ensuring that the carbon emissions assigned to the industry are a direct result of the leather production process.

The next meeting of the GLCC will be held at the Asia Pacific Leather Fair in Hong Kong in March-April 2014.

Publishing Data

This article was originally published on page 44 of the December 2013 issue of SATRA Bulletin.

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