Mexican tanners to use more fish skins?
It is claimed that tilapia skins could provide enough finished leather for 54,000 pairs of boots each month.
Image © Bjorn Christian Torrissen
A leather development company in Mexico claims to have developed a new technique that will allow the country’s tanneries to use tilapia fish skins. Tanned tilapia skin is reported to compare favourably with reptile leather, as the scales are said to be similar. A spokesperson for the organisation stated that if tanners adopt the new technique to manufacture fish leather, Mexico will be helped to protect its reptile species, some of which are endangered.
Calculations suggest that fishing companies in the Mexican states of Chiapas, Jalisco and Zacatecas alone discard some 20 tonnes of tilapia skins each month. This would be sufficient to supply tanners with 1.2 million skins per month, which could supply footwear producers with enough finished leather to manufacture an estimated 54,000 pairs of boots. This new fish-leather technology was launched at the May 2015 edition of the ANPIC fair in León.
This article was originally published on page 4 of the July/August 2015 issue of SATRA Bulletin.