You’ve Got Questions – We’ve Got Answers
As part of our ongoing commitment to providing excellent customer support, Sauvait is ready to provide answers to all your questions. Below we’ve compiled a list of frequently asked questions and their answers. If you can’t find what you’re looking for, please give us a call or write us a note and we’ll be happy to answer all your inquiries.
- The use of water in the production of leather is very inefficient (water scarcity affects 40% of the world population in developing countries like India suffering the most).
- The raising and slaughter of animals require big volumes of water which including growing animal feed and maintaining grazing land (Grazing livestock requires 25% of land surface. This land could be used to grow trees for fuel, timber, vegetables, and fruits as 1/3rd of Earths land suffers from desertification which includes clearing of forest land for grazing).
- In developing countries like India, which faces water scarcity, most of the water is being used for industrial purposes. On an average 18 pairs of shoes are made from one cowhide, which involves 1.4 million liters of water.
- Giving a realistic picture, you are accountable for having a bath every day for about 40 years for every pair you use. You might think leather is biodegradable, however, the tanning agent eliminates its biodegradability
- Farm animals contribute to a lot of waste that leaches into the surface, and groundwater and pollutes rivers and wells contributing to global warming.
- Countries like India and China are targets for the leather industry as the EU has very strict regulations for animal slaughter.
The facts highlight that leather is a significant drain on the world’s resources, not to mention the questionable methods of animal slaughter in developing countries with little or no regulation. As an industry, it seems to have a poor level of responsibility for its damaging environmental impact and the repercussions, as information around leather production and traceability is conveniently suppressed. The environmental impact and working conditions are information that is not often available on the labels of fashion items, or even on brand websites, so much of this damage is going unnoticed. And as leather will always be tied to animal agriculture, it will always have a heavy environmental footprint.
In comparison, vegan leather requires no grain to be watered and harvested for feed; no animals to be reared and then slaughtered; it is not a major contributor to water pollution, requiring only the land of the factory used to produce it. Synthetic materials have also come a very long way since PVC, and manufacturers are always upping their game, innovating ways to improve sustainability. As vegan leather will always be tied to textile technology, it will always be reducing its environmental footprint.
Ultimately, it is up to the consumer to make informed choices about what they buy. And after looking at the evidence, when compared with high-quality vegan leather, animal leather seems archaic. It seems only a matter of time before everyone chooses cruelty-free, eco-friendly, sustainable vegan alternatives.