The Genuine Italian Vegetable Tanned Leather Consortium
Great news ! We are officially certified with The Genuine Italian Vegetable Tanned Leather Consortium. We've been working with a tannery in Tuscany for more than two years and they have all the certifications to prove their eco responsibility!
The Consortium’s mission is to safeguard and regulate the production of Tuscan Vegetable-Tanned Leather. All the tanneries that are certified by the Consortium has to follow the regulations of production.
While I was seating at their conference at Lineapelle last July, I've learned a lot about the The Genuine Italian Vegetable Tanned Leather Consortium. Diane Becker (who did speak at the conference) explained that it is impossible to have no footprint. It is then important to choose the impact you want to have with your product. Few things are important to make this choice : traceability, human factor and life spane.
Traceability — Know your ingredients
For Tuscan vegetable-tanning, extracts from chestnut, mimosa and quebracho trees are primarily used.
Fats and oils :
Tanneries use fats and oils to soften the leather. Plants can be used as well as a by-product of the animal. There is no petroleum used in the production of Vegetable-Tanned Leather.
For the Vegetable-Tanned Leather industry, they use 20 liters of water for a kilo of leather, compared to 100 liters of water for a kilo of leather in the Chromium-Tanned Leather industry.
The tanneries that are part of the The Genuine Italian Vegetable Tanned Leather Consortium usually have about 10 employees working in the tannery (all departments). They are artisans. They are creating a durable value to a product.
There are also three companies involved to regulate the production of Tuscan Vegetable Tanned Leather : Poteco, Ars Tinctoria and Consorzio Cuoio Depur.
— They do research in order to protect the environment.
Research, technology transfer and training for the leather supply chain: these are the areas in which POTECO operates, a fundamental scientific support for the growth of the entire district of Santa Croce sull’Arno and its companies.
— They do research to improve the chemicals (dyes) involved in the dying process of leather.
ARS TINCTORIA SRL is a chemical laboratory created for the structural and physical-chemical research of organic substances. ARS TINCTORIA SRL is involved in various environmental research projects, with the aim of improving the ecological nature of industrial processes.
— They take care of all the liquid discharges in the tanning industry.
Consorzio Cuoio Depur was set up, with the aim of realizing and managing the program for adapting the processing liquid discharges to the environmental regulations in force.
The Genuine Italian Vegetable Tanned Leather Consortium regulates the tanneries as they have to meet the industry standards such as : The leather have to not contain any azo dyes, nickel, chrome VI. It has to be metal free.
Life Spane — the utility
Tanneries make sure they meet the standards of the Consortium, but designers and consumers still have their responsibility in this process. It is a cycle. In order to be more eco-friendly, we have to take care of our things, to be more mindful of our choices. Leather doesn't wears out, it ages, in a beautiful way, if well taken care. When the product is not useful anymore, it can biodegrate and return to biosphere.
As fashion industry (including the footwear industry) has labels to identify materials and origin, the bags industry doesn't. This is where the Consortium plays a huge role to regulate the production and who uses their label.
When you buy a product at Miljours, you can find our label. The label gave you access to a serial number that is registered in the Consortium. Use the QR code on the back of the label to watch the Consortium video.