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Brazil - Brands begin to take note of Brazil’s leather certification programme
21 May 2018

Brazilian tanning industry body CICB has given details of progress it has made in convincing companies inside and outside the Brazilian leather manufacturing sector of the benefits of the Brazilian Leather Certification of Sustainability.

Work on this certification programme, known as CSCB, began in 2012, with standards agreed and published in 2014. Detailed criteria cover four “dimensions of sustainability” that the programme has identified: sustainability management, economic, environmental and social aspects.

There are four levels of certification that tanners can achieve, depending on how many of these criteria they fulfil. Provided they meet at least 50% of the indicators, they can earn a bronze certification. Silver is for those meeting 75%, gold 90% and diamond 100% of the criteria.

To date, two Brazilian tanning groups have achieved certification: Fuga Couros achieved a silver award in January 2018 and, two months later, Curtume Courovale achieved a gold award.

Speaking at the 2018 UITIC Congress in Porto on May 18, CSCB co-ordinator, Alvaro Flores, said 16 other tanning groups in Brazil are currently working towards certification. And because Brazil has 310 tanneries, 85% of which carry out wastewater treatment every day and 70% of which have their own environmental departments, CICB is optimistic that the certification programme has an important growth path ahead of it.

Mr Flores said the programme is also making an impact outside Brazil now. He mentioned the agreement signed with the Italian quality certification institute for the leather sector (ICEC) in March 2018 under which Brazil and Italy have agreed to recognise each other’s leather certification programmes.

He went on to say that finished product manufacturers are also beginning to pay attention to CSCB. One of Brazil’s largest footwear groups, Arezzo, has been in discussion with CICB about imposing CSCB certification as a requirement that its leather suppliers will have to meet in future. Finally, Mr Flores said luxury group Kering has also recognised the Brazilian certification programme.

“At the start of 2018, Kering published a new version of its group sustainability report and included a mention of CSCB,” Mr Flores told leatherbiz. “The Arezzo announcement is more recent. It’s an important footwear company in Brazil, manufacturing around 8,000 pairs of shoes per day. What it wants to do is to have all of its leather suppliers certified at least to silver level by 2020, so the tanners still have time to react.”

Information courtesy of Leatherbiz