Where to check the sustainability of a tannery

Where to check the sustainability of a tannery

Where to check the sustainability of a tannery

Tanneries in general have been driving up sustainability standards for decades, but how can you tell how individual ones are performing?

There are a number of organisations that monitor and audit the sustainability of tanneries. There are two in particular we at RLSD think are the most useful:

The Leather Working Group (LWG) is a not-for-profit organisation that is “committed to building a sustainable future with responsible leather”.

The Sustainable Leather Foundation is another not for profit outfit with the mission statement: “Environmental, Social and Economic responsibility are essential components for a valuable industry. Our mission it to support the global leather value chain to learn, to improve and to protect for future generations through the People, Planet, Profit principle.”

Tanneries can register with these organizations which have approaches to auditing for traceability, environmental impact, social responsibility and chemical management; meeting key components of the United Nations sustainability goals.

The audit has evolved to be a holistic, ESG-focused audit, and it now covers all elements of responsible leather manufacturing including environmental management, traceability, chemical management, social responsibility, and governance.

The SLF runs a “Transparency Dashboard” on their website which anyone can search. Companies that work in the leather value chain sign up to an audit certification standard that assesses their compliance and performance against three pillars of sustainability, Environmental, Social and Governance. The dashboard is available for consumers to search.

Both these organisations provide a valuable service for consumers and leather manufacturers who care about the environment and the welfare of workers. Between them they cover all parts of the leather supply chain including tanneries.

For more information see https://www.leatherworkinggroup.com/ and https://sustainableleatherfoundation.com/