Leather also has a role to play in the fight against deforestation

Original content by: Lederpiel

How many cows are killed to make a luxury bag? The correct answer is none.

According to a latest report from the NGO World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), leather is entirely a by-product of the meat and dairy industries. Consequently, leather manufacturers are crucial players in stopping the deforestation of forests. This study supports and acknowledges the need to use leather as a by-product and also clearly demonstrates the importance of considering full life cycle analysis of leather.

«Leather is one of the oldest forms of recycling known. There are many benefits to using leather as a by-product of livestock production», WWF explains in its report. «Leather also has a role to play in fighting deforestation». However, the NGO points out that the leather industry can play a leading role in the fight against deforestation of our forests, mainly by pressuring ranchers to engage in sustainable grazing and livestock practices. The sale of raw hides can be an economic incentive for farmers. For this reason, according to the WWF, the tanners should use their influence over them to put pressure on them and thus prevent them from continuing to destroy natural ecosystems for the intensive farming of cattle herds.

«Leather is an important by-product of livestock production with a rich history. Its durability and position as a luxury item make it a highly desirable material for consumers. The increase in meat consumption globally means that hides will continue to exist on the market and, if not used for leather, they are often wasted, creating methane while sitting in a landfill», the WWF report concludes. «The leather industry has an opportunity to intensify and strengthen its efforts to eliminate deforestation and improve the beef supply chain through the additional income that hide sales bring to producers. Companies that purchase leather can use their influence to drive change and accelerate the protection of habitats at risk», warns the study. «Leather also has a role to play in the fight against deforestation».

You can download the study HERE

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Spanish hides and leather exports confirm their recovery in 2022

Original content by: Lederpiel

2022 was undoubtedly the year of the recovery of exports from the tanning industry in Spain. Foreign sales of leather and hides closed 2022 with a significant increase compared to 2021 and before the pandemic in 2019. In this way, the recovery of foreign sales of all subsectors (processed leather, semi-tanned leather and raw hides), marking an export record not reached in decades by the Spanish sector.

According to data from the General Directorate of Customs, in 2022 compared to 2021, exports of raw hides grew by 2.5% (3.9 million euros more), those of semi-tanned hides shot up by 14.9% (9.5 million euros more) and those of tanned hides increased by 24.8% (84.3 million euros more).

If we compare the accumulated figures for 2022 with those of 2019, prior to the covid-19 pandemic, sales of raw hides increased by 5.3%, while semi-tanned hides increased by 28.9% and those of tanned hides, 13.4%.


Regarding imports of hides and leather, in 2022 compared to 2021, purchases abroad of raw hides increased by 33.6% (18.6 million euros more); the import of semi-tanned hides, 41.4% (34.7 million euros more) and, finally, those of tanned hides, 33.3% (73 million euros more).

In relation to the accumulated figures for 2019, sales of raw hides increased by 39.1% and semi-tanned hides by 22.5%, while those of tanned hides decreased by 6.2%.

Consequently, the trade balance for leather in 2022 showed an imbalance in general terms in favor of exports of 167.8 million euros.

You can read the original post HERE.