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Leather is a universally versatile material used in various products in the global market. Today, leather, specifically from the commercial cow, is still desired by manufacturers for its durability, accessibility, and quality. However, there are adverse environmental and ethical consequences of leather products using chrome tanning, in particular, that consumers do not recognize. This paper analyzes, evaluates, and contextualizes the current methods of leather production and the environmental issues associated with the trade. Furthermore, it discusses some sustainable efforts made regarding material choice and alternative production methods. With a holistic review of leather production and its implications, this paper examines the EU Strategy for Sustainable Circular Economy and Textiles, Chain of Custody - Transparency in Leather Manufacturing Pilot Program, and the Sustainable Development Goals in the Leather Industry EU. These policies aim to foster a more environmentally aware and sustainable leather trade. This paper will determine their effectiveness, feasibility, and potential drawbacks, then recommend reform options reflecting the current policies.
Leather Industry, Environment, Policy
Cafasso, Ava M., "From Hide to Handbag: A Holistic Review of the Leather Industry and Its Environmental Impact" (2023). GLO 100 Introduction to Global Studies: Policy Analysis Papers. 3.
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