Company’s brands join the Leather Working Group (LWG) aiming to lead the auto industry in responsible raw material procurement.

Announcing the new initiative, Dirk Große-Loheide, Member of the Brand Board of Management of Volkswagen responsible for Procurement and member of the Extended Executive Committee, said: “The Volkswagen Group is assuming responsibility for sustainable and transparent supply chains. Becoming a member of the LWG is an important step. The organization’s expertise will help us become even more sustainable in our use of leather.

“Leather is a mark of quality for our customers. Together with our suppliers, we are committed to internationally accepted standards. The facilities in which our leather is manufactured is also important. They should receive certification from LWG,” says Barbara Frenkel, Executive Board Member for Procurement at Porsche AG. In the Volkswagen Group, Porsche AG is responsible for evaluating sustainability risks in leather sourcing and implementing mitigation measures.

Christina Trautmann of LWG added: “Traceability in the supply chains is one of the most important ways in which companies can ensure that they are sourcing leather responsibly. This is at the core of our efforts.

A commitment to sustainable leather

“We are looking forward to the Volkswagen Group’s active involvement. With its support we intend to drive forward the development of tools and methods that will have a positive impact on the leather industry.”

In 2021, the VW Group published its Responsible Raw Materials Report. The report explains how the company’s newly established management system for raw material procurement is operated. As well as leather, the report covers 16 high-risk raw materials, including battery materials such as lithium and cobalt.

According to VW, material-specific tender specifications for leather were introduced in early 2022. The specifications call for both disclosure of the country of origin of the raw material and a leather-specific sustainability certificate – issued, for example, by LWG.

For more information see the Volkswagen website and the Leather Working Group.